Rutledge Launches Prescription for Life in Lonoke County
October 23, 2018
Program now in 85 schools, reaching over 9,500 students
LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today provided an update on her first-in-the-nation education initiative “Prescription for Life” which expanded to the Cabot school district during national Red Ribbon Week. Attorney General Rutledge was joined today by law enforcement and education leaders to kick off the program in Lonoke County. Prescription for Life is now active in 85 schools in 61 counties, reaching a total of 9,535 students across Arkansas. Another 25 schools have committed to using Prescription for Life.
“One year ago, we launched Prescription for Life,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “And this year we celebrate the program’s huge success during Red Ribbon Week to bring awareness about the dangers of drug abuse. Prescription for Life is making a difference in our schools and educating teens about opioid abuse and misuse.”
Joining Attorney General Rutledge were Diane Upchurch, Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge, Little Rock; U.S. Attorney Duane (Dak) Kees, Western District of Arkansas; Lonoke County Prosecuting Attorney Chuck Graham; Cabot Police Chief Jackie Davis; Supervisory Special Agent Nate Koen, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration; Cabot Schools Superintendent Tony Thurman and officials with Everfi and Walmart.
Additionally, Rutledge is collaborating with the FBI and DEA to coordinate statewide screenings of the film “Chasing the Dragon” for students Oct. 24. “Chasing the Dragon” is a documentary produced by the FBI and DEA, which exposes the truth behind the opioid epidemic devastating communities in Arkansas and across the United States.
Rutledge also partners with federal and state agencies for the biannual National Take Back Day, coming up Oct. 27 at various locations throughout the State. Since 2016, more than 600 pounds of prescription drugs were collected at Attorney General Mobile Offices across Arkansas.
Each year, Rutledge also partners with a number of agencies in hosting the Arkansas Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Summit. The summit is a free training and educational opportunity for law enforcement officers, medical professionals, pharmacists and educators. The seventh annual Summit is scheduled for Nov. 1 in Hot Springs, with more than 1,000 already registered.
Prescription for Life features a digital platform to help high school students in the State understand the dangers of prescription drug misuse and how to prevent abuse. The self-paced modular course uses video, animations, simulations and interactivity to deliver a personalized, self-guided learning experience. The real-life simulations demonstrate the impact misuse can have on students’ physical and mental health, relationships and future goals while the scenario-based exercises help students practice how to support other students in their choices regarding the safe use of prescription drugs. The course is aligned with the Centers for Disease Control’s National Health Education Standards and State academic standards.
In August, Rutledge announced a new initiative, #Rx4LifeStories, to allow Arkansans to talk about how the nation’s opioid epidemic has impacted their lives and the lives of their families.
Rutledge is also suing Johnson & Johnson, Purdue Pharma and Endo, opioid manufacturers who created the crisis in Arkansas for violations of the Arkansas Deceptive Trade Practices Act and the Arkansas Medicaid Fraud False Claims Act.