(Belleville, IL) – Today, local leaders in combatting the opioid crisis joined with state and national organizations to announce the formation of the Rx Abuse Leadership Initiative (RALI) of Illinois. The broad-based alliance brings together more than health care, law enforcement, veteran, community, and drug prevention organizations to address the opioid epidemic in Illinois. RALI Illinois will bring a collaborative, multi-dimensional approach to the crisis through support for effective prevention, treatment and recovery programs.
RALI Illinois will initially focus on proper storage and disposal of prescription medications, which can help prevent misuse. The alliance will provide educational materials and tools to help reduce the misuse of unused medicines in the home. This is especially important because research has found that 60 percent of Americans who are prescribed opioid painkillers keep leftover medication in their medicine cabinet.
“The opioid epidemic is going to take a comprehensive approach that employs multiple strategies and many stakeholders to address it,” said General Arthur T. Dean, chairman and CEO of Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA). “We view our partnership with RALI Illinois as a model for how communities can enhance local primary prevention efforts and increase awareness about the dangers of substance use and misuse. By working together, we can build safe and healthy drug-free communities.”
As part of its launch, RALI Illinois will present 50,000 drug disposal pouches to partners and organizations who will distribute them to residents free of charge. The pouches are among the FDA-approved methods for disposing of unused medicines.
“On the front lines of the addiction crisis every day, law enforcement personnel know how important it is that we take a comprehensive approach to the opioid epidemic,” said Jim Kaitschuk, executive director of the Illinois Sheriffs’ Association. “We need to employ strategies that stop addiction before it starts, and proper disposal of medications is a key part of that.”
In addition to providing disposal pouches throughout the state, RALI Illinois will offer community grants to organizations dedicated to prevention and treatment of substance use disorders.
To learn more about RALI Illinois, visit www.rali-il.org.
About RALI Illinois:
RALI Illinois is an alliance of 20 local, state and national organizations working to elevate solutions to the state’s opioid crisis. Members include:
Addiction Policy Forum
The BASE Chicago
Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA)
Community – The Anti-Drug
Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance
Hoyleton Youth & Family Services
Illinois Academy of Family Physicians
Illinois Pharmacists Association
Illinois Sheriffs’ Association
Midwest Business Group on Health
National Black Nurses Association
National Consumers League
National Sheriffs’ Association
Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA)
Veterans Against Drugs
Veterans Health Council
Vietnam Veterans of America
West Garfield Park Community Stakeholders