September 14, 2012

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Ulster sheriff reaffirms support for AWARENESS education program

Shultis (file): "kids
keeping an eye on
younger kids"

KINGSTON – As the AWARENESS alcohol and substance abuse -prevention program seeks to expand its reach to divert students by bringing their peer to peer program to Ulster County school districts, Sheriff Paul Van Blarcum said he is solidly behind the program. He has backed it since its inception by its executive director, Marie Shultis, in 2007.

“I also believe that any kind of program that we can get out for the kids, especially ones where kids, as peer to peers, so kids keeping an eye on younger kids and trying to train the other kids and teach them, I think is an excellent program and for sure, worthwhile trying," Van Blarcum said.                       

Others who have endorsed the program include New Paltz Village Justice James Bacon, County Executive Michael Hein and the county district attorney’s office.

“The most sobering factor of drug use is death. When it happens, you can’t ignore it,” said Bacon.

Van Blarcum provides meeting space at the county Law Enforcement Center in Kingston for AWARENESS’ monthly meetings.

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