The state Office of Drug Control Policy and the Partnership@DrugFreeIowa.org are holding a listening post in Council Bluffs this afternoon. Partnership president, Peter Komendowski, says they want to hear from the communities in Iowa about illegal drug activity related to kids.
“There’s been a lot of issues over the past few years in terms of what the state should do in terms of legislation, drug control policy and then prevention and education programs to best meet the needs of the various communities,” Komendowski says. “And it’s been key for us at the Parternship to reach out to the communities because so many of them don’t feel they have a voice in Des Moines… and I think that is part of the job.”
This will be the second listening post, following one held last week in Clinton. “What we found was a strong contingent of educators and treatment professionals that felt that we were not doing an effective job of providing enough resources, both to parents and educators as well as children to understand the scope of the problems. Problems that have seen an increase, especially in generational issues with either substance abuse or criminal behavior.”
Komendowski says these listening posts are targeted at reaching all those who think more needs to be done. “We want people to feel if they don’t have a voice — or especially if they feel they may be frustrated — to come to this forum. We will listen to them. I make a point of it,” Komendowski says.
There is another forum scheduled for October 2nd in Waterloo, and Komendowski says he would like to schedule 12 to 14 more across the state. If you are not able to attend a forum, he says you can go to DrugFreeIowa.org and contact him with your concerns. The forum today is at Heartland Family Service in Council Bluffs.