The Health Care Action Team of the Jamestown's Strategic Planning and Partnerships Commission announces a community education lecture for the public entitled ''Striking Back at the White Plague.''
It will be held at Jamestown Community College's Scharmann Theater on Thursday, Sept. 11, at 7 p.m. HCAT is partnering with the United Way for the presentation of this significant topic as well as several sponsors including Jamestown Community College, the city of Jamestown, Chautauqua County, Jamestown Public Schools, the Mental Health Association, Chautauqua Alcohol and Substance Abuse Council, the Resource Center, Burgett &Robbins, The Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, WCA Hospital, Jamestown Area Medical Associates and The Post-Journal.
Guest speakers are Dr. David Withers, a fellow of the American College of Emergency Physicians, who is board certified in both emergency medicine and addiction medicine. He is the fellowship director of the Geisinger Addiction Medicine Program and on the faculty of the Family Medicine Program at Geisinger in Waverly, Pa. He formerly was chairman of the Emergency Department at WCA Hospital, flight physician for WCA Starflight Helicopter Service, practiced addiction medicine and general medicine at WCA Hospital and was the medical director of the hospital's Chemical Dependency Program.
Withers will be joined by Dr. Karen McElrath, an endowed professor in the Department of Criminal Justice at Fayetteville State University in Fayetteville, N.C. She previously was in the department of sociology, social policy and social work at Queen's University in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Prior to that she served as an associate professor at the University of Miami. McElrath's PhD. is in criminology and her masters degree is in justice administration. She has published extensively on drug related issues.
Last but not at all least is Jamestown's director of public safety and chief of police. Chief Harry Snellings is a decorated U.S. Army veteran, earning numerous service medals and commendations, including two Bronze Star Medals for exemplary service. He is an 18-year veteran of the Jamestown Police Department. The chief has been in the forefront of the war against drugs in the area and has stood out as a leader in this effort.
The speakers are leaders in their fields and will help inform the community about the scope of the area's drug problem, the underlying causes, the tragic personal and family consequences of addiction, the damaging domino affects including crimes and the treatment of the disease. Also the gaps in treatment options will be noted. A question and answer discussion period will follow the presentations. Refreshments will be served. The program is free to the public.