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Green Cross Quarterly

Making a difference in the lives of millions.

December 2017

  • Celebrating Safety Excellence


    Commit to helping eliminate preventable deaths in our lifetime.


    Join more than 500 safety executives and community leaders from a variety of industries across the nation who are committed to eliminating preventable deaths in our lifetime. Mark your calendar for May 23, 2018, for the annual Green Cross for Safety Gala, celebrating outstanding individuals and companies leading the way in safety excellence, innovation and leadership.

    Stand with your peers and demonstrate your commitment to safety by sponsoring the Gala. It's not only a powerful way to associate your brand with the National Safety Council's world renowned safety reputation, you'll also network with some of the most advanced thinkers in the industry.

    A range of sponsorship packages are available. Venue sponsorship opportunities include reception, dinner program and award sponsors; table sponsorships and individual tickets also are available. Donations are tax deductible. 

    The deadline for companies' inclusion on the formal invitation is Jan. 22. Those who want to be in the program or have signage at the event need to respond by March 12.

    For more information, please visit GreenCross.nsc.org.

    A Mother's Loss


    One overdose reflects many other tragic deaths.
     

    Felicia Miceli thinks of addiction as a river flowing into an ocean. Heroin is the rapids, with a strong and relentless undercurrent. When those struggling with addiction reach the rapids, they either decide to fight and swim against the rapids or let the current take them away.

    It was the latter that happened to 24-year-old Louie.

    Felicia's eldest son loved to laugh, eat and flirt. Before his addiction to prescription painkillers and heroin, Louie spent time with his big Italian family at Felicia's home in Medinah, IL. He pulled out chairs for his grandmother. Chillingly, he won a medal for having the best anti-drug speech in his elementary school class. Louie loved swimming, baseball and soccer, though football was his passion.

    Inadvertently, it also was his undoing.

    Louie started taking opioid prescription painkillers following a football injury. Louie's doctor prescribed the pills, but they were widely available anyway.

    "All the football players were injured and passing pills around," Felicia said. "It was the norm."

    Louie's doctor continued to fill prescriptions for painkillers long after Louie's injury, afraid he would be in pain. But the overprescribing helped create an addiction Louie could not shake. Eventually, Louie switched to heroin – a cheaper, but illegal, alternative that has infiltrated suburbia and changed the face of drug addiction.

    Suddenly, Felicia's son was unrecognizable. Louie began stealing from her. He missed family events. Twice he went to rehabilitation, and twice he left committed to staying clean.

    But like many who struggle with addiction, Louie's need became too great. On Aug. 7, 2012, one month after his second rehab stint, Louie fatally overdosed on heroin.

    Like Louie's, many heroin addictions begin with addictions to prescription opioid painkillers. Many of these prescriptions follow legitimate injuries or surgeries.

    "Louie himself was shocked that this drug got a hold of him," Felicia said. "If he had survived his addiction, he would have been the biggest advocate for this issue."

    Felicia travels to schools sharing Louie's story and educating students about the dangers of painkiller and heroin abuse. Felicia will not be silenced. She speaks because Louie can't. She speaks because she needs to break the stigma surrounding addiction. And she speaks because tomorrow, 45 more mothers will tell the exact same story.

    "Louie, you did not die in vain," she said, "and you will never be forgotten."

    Each year, 22,000 people are killed by a prescription drug overdose. Drug overdose is the No. 1 cause of preventable death in the United States. No community is immune. Join us and make a gift today to support our fight against this epidemic.

    Opioid Abuse Targeted by New Campaign


    'Stop Everyday Killers' raises awareness across the nation.


    The National Safety Council recently launched Stop Everyday Killers, a national campaign to educate people on the risks of opioids and provide tools to prevent misuse of medications in homes and communities.

    The campaign launched in Chicago with a moving memorial honoring those who have lost their lives to this epidemic. The memorial will visit other cities in the coming months. Interested companies and organizations can sponsor these visits in their own communities.

    An NSC survey found one in four Americans have been directly impacted by opioid misuse. The poll also reported 40% of respondents said they were not concerned about prescription medication posing a threat to their family – perhaps because they do not know what they are being prescribed.

    Stop Everyday Killers features an art installation of 22,000 pills, each with a face carved on it. The pills represent the number of people who die every year – one every 24 minutes – from prescription opioid overdoses.

    NSC also is distributing Opioid Warn-Me labels patients can stick on their insurance and pharmacy cards to prompt a conversation with their prescribers about the risks of taking opioids and possible alternatives. And, NSC is working with pharmaceutical disposal company Stericycle, which is providing pre-paid Seal&Send envelopes for disposing of unused medications.

    The campaign also features a video of people who have lost family members to overdoses interviewing people who are using opioids. The footage highlights the impact the crisis has on those affected most – loved ones and families.

    The memorial is going on the road, with stops in Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Washington, D.C. and other cities, and your company might be able to sponsor a visit to your community. For information on sponsoring the memorial, contact Bridget Ballek at bridget.ballek@nsc.org. Learn more about the campaign, and the opioid crisis, by visiting StopEverydayKillers.org.

    Advocates Share Their Stories
        

    NSC workshop helps those affected by tragedy use their voices.


    Nineteen advocates from all over the country spent two days at NSC headquarters to receive speaking, media and legislative training as part of the Council's survivor advocate workshop in November.

    Survivor advocates are people whose lives have forever been impacted by a preventable injury or death from a vehicle crash, prescription drug overdose, or fatigue- or job-related incident. Advocates are people who survived incidents themselves or family members of those who were injured or killed.

    Advocates legislate for stronger policies and laws, educate communities and influencers, and connect with other survivors. Training sessions included on-camera interviewing, an update on Distracted Driving Awareness Month, briefings on transportation and prescription drug initiatives and a lecture on public speaking.

    "The advocates are the hearts and faces of the hundreds of preventable deaths that happen every day," said Survivor Advocate Program Manager Katherine van den Bogert. "Their ability to influence and impact positive change is immeasurable."

    The workshop included attendees with stories about vehicle crashes and prescription drug misuse.

    Do you know someone who wants to share their story or become a survivor advocate? Is there an audience that might be safer after hearing an advocate speak? If so, contact Katherine van den Bogert at katherine.vandenbogert@nsc.org.

  • Share the Gift of Safety This Holiday Season


     

    The National Safety Council has remained committed to keeping you and your loved ones safe for more than 100 years. Our mission is to eliminate all preventable deaths in our lifetime – at home, at the workplace and on the road.

    Help us continue to keep each other safe and consider making a gift this holiday season to support our cause. You can also honor a loved one or recognize a colleague or friend. 

    Find joy and inspiration in giving the gift of safety. Wishing you a very happy and safe holiday season.

    Shop Online and Save Lives


    As you shop this holiday season, please consider designating the National Safety Council as your preferred charity through the AmazonSmile program.

    Simply shop through the Council's AmazonSmile link and and .5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases will be donated to the National Safety Council.

    Share this with your colleagues, family and friends as they start their shopping, and let's all keep each other safe this holiday season. All donated funds come from Amazon, not from your payment – there is no added cost to the shopper.

National Safety Council Mission

The National Safety Council eliminates preventable deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the road through leadership, research, education and advocacy.

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