Brookhaven will provide free drug testing kits to parents seeking to know whether their children are abusing drugs, town officials announced Tuesday.
Using funds from drug seizures, Suffolk County Sheriff Vincent DeMarco is providing the town’s youth bureau with the free kits for urine tests, said town Supervisor Edward Romaine. The kits can be obtained by calling 631-451-TOWN, and the testing is free as well, Romaine said.
“There is a rising wave of drug abuse among young people,” Romaine said Wednesday. “Usage is rising over the years, and that is a huge problem. So we said, ‘What can we do?’”
The kits test for the presence of heroin, marijuana, OxyContin, Vicodin and other drugs, he said.
The town initiative, called “Test, Don’t Guess,” will continue for the foreseeable future, Romaine said. He said there is a large supply of kits available.
If parents need additional resources, the youth bureau has two counselors available. “I think counseling is so important,” Romaine said. “We don’t want kids going down the wrong path.”
In addition, the town is hosting events to educate people and to properly dispose of prescription medication.
The drug kits will be available at heroin awareness presentations, scheduled for 6 p.m. on April 10 at the Manorville Fire Department headquarters and 6 p.m. on April 24 at the Mastic Fire Department headquarters. Those presentations will also provide residents a chance to safely discard medications.
Another medication disposal event and opportunity to pick up drug testing kits is scheduled for Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Rose Caracappa Senior Center in Mount Sinai.