Model facility promises to stand as an essential drug rehab asset for residents of the Greater Tampa Bay community.
The superb new model Narconon Suncoast was welcomed into the ever-widening Narconon family Saturday, November 7, with a stirring dedication ceremony attended by some 3,000 supporters in Clearwater, Florida. The center utilizes the program’s groundbreaking rehab technology to help free addicts and alcoholics from the ravages of addiction and set them on the road to leading drug-free lives.
Located on a serene wooded property, just minutes from Clearwater’s downtown core, the center’s four buildings span more than 35,000 square feet on 7.5 acres.
The dedication’s timing is fortuitous, as the state of Florida finds itself weighed down by an escalating drug abuse crisis. These facts tell the tale:
- More than 8,500 people died as a result of drug abuse in Florida last year;
- In Pinellas County alone, someone succumbs to a narcotics-related issue every 32 hours;
- The state earned a notorious reputation as the “Pill Mill” capital of America. And despite a crackdown on these practices in recent years, deaths related to prescription drug use are still on the rise;
- Heroin-related deaths in the state have increased 124 percent.
The need for effective drug rehabilitation is urgent and Narconon Suncoast stands ready to bring its life-changing program to the people of Greater Tampa Bay. It opens during a time of enormous growth for the Narconon drug and rehabilitation network around the world.
Executive Director of the Association for Better Living and Education International (ABLE) officiated at the Narconon Suncoast grand opening ceremony, welcoming the guests on Saturday: “Like many areas across the nation, Florida has most certainly suffered its fair share of families shattered due to the trap of addiction. So it is, one is hard-pressed to find anyone that is not connected to or affected by addiction in some way or another. Today, Narconon is a global leader in drug and alcohol rehabilitation and its sole purpose is to help people lead drug-free lives. And here too, at Narconon Suncoast, we are dedicated to helping people overcome addiction—for good.”
Taking the stage at the model Narconon Suncoast opening were local dignitaries Mr. Jay Polglaze, Clearwater Vice Mayor; The Honorable Kathleen Peters, Florida State Representative; The Honorable Chris Latvala, Florida State Representative; and Mr. Bob Dillinger, Public Defender for Florida’s Sixth Judicial District.
Vice Mayor Polglaze hailed the new Narconon as a valuable asset to the Clearwater community. “I sincerely wish to thank those responsible for bringing this Narconon here,” he said. “I wish you great success as you help us create a drug-free Clearwater.”
State Representative Peters has seen firsthand, in visits to jails, prisons, hospitals and detox centers, the harmful effects of drugs. “I witnessed the thousands upon thousands who both needed help and wanted help,” she said. “Needless to say, I have seen programs that are not conducive to real results. So when I saw Narconon, it was refreshing. Here was a place that was addressing the individual and passionately driven about results. Here is a group to have on our team.”
State Representative Latvala, who appreciates the powerful difference Narconon can make in the lives of families ravaged by drugs, said, “I can’t wait to attend your Narconon graduations and witness the bright new lives and hopes that will spring forth from those doors. Our community needs this, and that is why I am very happy that Narconon Suncoast is here.”
Public Defender Dillinger elaborated on the intimate link between drug abuse and crime. “I have seen those who have gone through the Narconon program and have now turned their lives around,” he said. “I am very glad that this Narconon facility is opening to help me get people off the streets, out of the jails and whole again.”
For nearly 50 years, Narconon has saved the lives of countless individuals who were thought lost to substance abuse forever. Its mission is to provide an effective path for drug abuse rehabilitation and to assist society in reversing the narcotic abuse menace worldwide.
Narconon centers operate today in some 23 countries on six continents. For more information on the Narconon program, visit narconon.org or call 1-800-775-8750.