Gov. John Kasich announced the launch of a statewide drug education program Wednesday called “Start Talking.” The program encourages parents and teachers to talk to young people about the dangers of heroin and prescription drugs.
At the launch event at a middle school south of Dayton, many of the speeches were emotional. Paul Schoonover of Columbus was one of the speakers.
"Approximately 20 months ago, we had a knock on our door that no parent ever wants to receive," he said. "It was the Columbus police coming to tell us that they had found our 21-year-old son Matthew. He had died of a drug overdose in his car in a parking lot. Matt was one day out of rehab. Our son will not die in vain."
From 1999 to 2011, the number of deaths from drug overdoses in Ohio multiplied by five.
“Start Talking” is taking applications from schools and community groups for a million dollars in federal funds to go towards drug prevention programs