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Seminar on substance abuse prevention set

Monday, Feb. 17 | By Hannah Dellinger
A free seminar for parents or parents-to-be, in preventing substance abuse will be held on Feb. 27 at the Warrenton Community Center from 6 to 8 p.m.

The seminar is open to expectant parents or parents of children that are up to, but not including, kindergarten age.
The focus of the seminar is to teach parents how they can take preemptive steps to protect their children from falling into the habit of abusing drugs. Parents will learn what happens to the brain of a toddler that can later lead to addiction and will be guided toward steps that can help prevent addiction.

“This event is meant to help parents of children from birth up to kindergarten to guide them to prevent their children from becoming addicted [to drugs] when they move on to teenage years,” said Dr. Robert Iadeluca, a practicing clinical psychologist who is hosting the event.

Iadeluca holds a research degree in Lifespan Development Psychology, including the study of the brain and accompanying behaviors. In 1990 Iadeluca retired as a research psychologist with the federal government and opened a practice as a clinical psychologist on Hospital Hill in Warrenton in 1992.

The Fauquier Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring the event. Chamber president, Joe Martin, said that addiction is a problem that can negatively affect the workforce and that this meeting is an important step to take toward prevention in the county.

“This is not just a community concern; it can adversely affect the business community as well,” said Martin. “If an employer or employee has an addiction problem, they won't be as productive as they can be in the work place.”

According to Iadeluca, employees that use drugs are two and a half times more likely to have absences for eight days or more, three times more likely to be late for work and five times more likely to file a workers compensation claim.

Impaired employees can also the increase workloads of coworkers, compromise the quality of the business’ work, increase company turnover and potentially harm the reputation of the business.

Martin went on to say that the addiction is not just a problem for the work force, but also for our community as a whole.

“Our tag line is better business, better community,” said Martin. “When Dr. Iadaluca came to me about this epidemic of addiction in our community and shared his knowledge and experience and how important education about this is to young parents, I thought it was just the right thing to do.
“The more we can help facilitate getting the information out to our community and the effect of addiction in the business community, the better.”

According to Iadeluca, addiction is the greatest root cause of accidental injury, medical disease and premature death in the United States.

“More people are dying from prescription drug overdoses than suicide or car accidents,” said Iadeluca. “Considering the vast social costs of untreated addictions in terms of incarcerations and criminal justice burdens, not to mention poverty and homelessness, it is clear that addiction is our nation’s central public health challenge

Those who are interested in in attending the event must RSVP to the Chamber of Commerce by calling (540) 347-4414. Due to fire regulations, there is a maximum capacity of 150 attendees, so those who are interested are encouraged to RSVP as soon as possible.

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