North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

Parents can learn to spot signs of drug use


File Photo

Arlington police officer Rory Bolter, left, along with Snohomish Health District Director Dr. Gary Goldbaum, center, and Snohomish County Sheriff's Office Bureau Chief Mark Richardson answer audience questions at a community forum about heroin presented in part by the Arlington Drug Awareness Coalition on Sept. 27, 2016.

Parents in Lakewood and Arlington can get a hands-on demonstration in recognizing signs of drug use on Jan. 19 as part of the "Not in My House" events.

The simultaneous presentations will be held at Weston High School and Lakewood High School and are presented by the Arlington Drug Awareness Coalition (ADAC).

The presentations will be held 6:30-7:30 p.m.

"What we want to do is help parents recognize whether their kids have these pieces of drug paraphernalia or the other signs that drug abuse is going on," said Andrea Conley, one of the members of ADAC.

Conley said that parents aren't always sure what to look for and the two events are meant to provide some confidence and knowledge.

"I think, as parents, we're always concerned about invasion of privacy against our children as well, and part of what we want is to give our parents permission to approach this so they can protect their children," said Conley.

The presentations at the two local high schools will be set up with "bedroom scenarios" where parents and other community adults will be able to participate and physically look for and find the common hiding places for drug paraphernalia and/or drugs.

A local furniture-rental company, Buddy's Home Furnishings, has donated many pieces of furniture for the event.

School Resource Officers from each district will talk about what to look for and the signs of drug abuse in teenagers.

This is the first event that ADAC has offered in Lakewood, said Conley, so there may be a bit more talking during that presentation as local officials explain the current problems with drugs in that area.

A resource fair that will provide resources to parents who need support is also available at the event.

Many local organizations plan to participate at the events including the Arlington Community Resource Center, Alanon/Alateen, Youth Dynamics and the Snohomish Health District.

ADAC is a partnership between Arlington school officials, police officials and other local organizations meant to provide awareness and support for locals going through problems with drug addiction.

The group has been working in the Arlington area now for a few years and has provided multiple informational events at Arlington High School.

Conley said that past events have been well-received. "I was really excited to see how grateful the kids were for that information," she said.

The "Not in My House" event will be their newest presentation. "This is one more part of the education piece," said Conley.

More information about ADAC is available at their Facebook page at


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