Investigation finds ranger used illegal drugs

An investigation into a June 2018 incident involving the Blue Ridge Parkway’s Pisgah District Ranger Greg Wozniak concluded that Wozniak violated both Tennessee drug laws and federal rules found in the U.S. Department of Interior Personnel Bulletin and in a 1986 executive order mandating a drug-free federal workplace. 

State passes ‘Death by Distribution’ law

Gov. Roy Cooper signed the Death by Distribution Act into law earlier this month, making it easier for prosecutors to charge drug dealers with second-degree murder for selling someone a lethal dose. 

Creating a recovery community: Cherokee holds fourth annual Rally for Recovery

By now, most everyone is familiar — often far too personally — with the toll of the opioid epidemic. Lost lives, stolen futures, vanished trust. Loved ones transformed into unrecognizable ghosts of themselves. Law enforcement, mental health and emergency services pushed past capacity. 

Major expansion set to open at Pathways

As homelessness continues to rise in Western North Carolina, Haywood County’s innovative and effective adult shelter is about to cut the ribbon on a brand new dorm designed to be a place of refuge for a critically underserved population. 

Canton joins opioid lawsuit

Of all the victims of the nation’s opioid epidemic, probably the most overlooked are the municipalities that have to expend taxpayer-funded resources to deal with the problem.

Ground breaks on crisis unit in Cherokee

The weather matched the mood when the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians broke ground on a $39 million crisis stabilization unit Wednesday, April 24. 

Death by Distribution: Drug dealers could be charged with murder

Drug dealers in North Carolina could face more prison time for selling someone a deadly dose of narcotics if newly proposed legislation becomes law. 

Complex child welfare cases costing counties

Substance abuse has had a number of unintended consequences on society from mental illness, unemployment, overcrowded jails, a backlogged court system, increased health care costs to homelessness, but one of the most devastating consequences is the separation of families. 

Face to face: Local homeless remain elusive

Huddled together in the dark near an old wood stove beneath an elaborate rigging of tarps and tents on a debris-strewn mucky dirt lot they’d called home for nearly a year, Susan “Sassy” Fulp and her fiancé Ronnie Hicks watched the heavy wet snow fall and felt the waylaid limbs of weary trees crash to the ground until Sassy finally noticed an unusual silence rising from the town around them. 

LEADing the way: Jail diversion program aims to address opioid crisis

Between 1999 and 2016, more than 12,000 people in North Carolina died from opioid overdoses. 

Not only are families losing their loved ones to the opioid crisis, but addiction is also placing a heavy burden on limited local resources. Drug-related crime has led to overcrowded jails, a backlogged court system and a spike in the number of children placed in the foster care system.

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