Coalitions come to Hotel Roanoke for summit to stop substance abuse

ROANOKE, Va. – Students, professionals and nonprofit groups are untiing to try to find an answer for addiction.

More than 100 people attended the Community Coalitions of Virginia statewide summit at the Hotel Roanoke on Wednesday. The summit touched on topics such as the ongoing opioid crisis, the rise of vaping and possible marijuana legislation in Virginia.

The event featured speakers including Virginia Secretary of Health and Human Resources Dr. Daniel Carey, and Will Jones, who advocates for marijuana law reform as part of Smart Approaches to Marijuana.

Community Coalitions of Virginia Chair Nour Alamiri says it's important for attendees to understand addiction as a universal, multifaceted issue.

"Addiction knows no face," Alamiri said. "We really have to destigmatize substance abuse disorder. It affects all of our communities. It affects every single one of us."