For Immediate Release
The St. Louis County Police Department’s Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Force will receive the 2012 “Outstanding Community Prevention Effort Award” in Washington D.C. on Thursday, December 13, 2012 as a result of their heroin initiative “Not-Even-Once” campaign in the St. Louis Metro area. The task force is made up, not only of St. Louis County Police Officers, but officers from eight other area municipal Police Departments.
The award will be presented by President Barack Obama’s Drug Czar, Director Gil Kerlikowske of the Office of National Drug Control Policy. It is given to the task force that exhibits outstanding results in community support, assistance and education in utilizing the cooperative spirit and tenets of the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) program. St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley will also be present at the award ceremony.
The goal of the “Not-Even-Once” program was to prevent young people from experimenting with heroin, and to reduce the overall number of heroin overdose fatalities in St. Louis County. After rising to a total of ninety-one deaths in 2011, heroin fatalities in St. Louis County have decreased by thirty percent to date in 2012.
Chief Tim Fitch stated, "I couldn’t be more proud of the tenacity that the officers have put forward to attack this growing problem. Heroin overdose deaths in St. Louis County have greatly diminished and every person on the task force has made a difference in that reduction. Our partners in this initiative have been the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse and the St. Louis County Children’s Fund.
“Chief Fitch, his department and the other area police departments are once again leading the way to help us curb this serious problem,” said Dooley. “This national recognition is well deserved.”\
The St. Louis County Police Department’s Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Force received the Midwest HIDTA Regional Award on Monday, December 3, 2012.