Jackson Center Invites Justice to Share Personal Impact of Opioid Crisis

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Robert H. Jackson Center

The Robert H. Jackson Center, a non-profit dedicated to promoting liberty under law through the examination of the life and work of Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson and its relevance to current events and issues, is pleased to welcome retired  Justice Salvatore R. Martoche to discuss his personal experience with the opioid crisis, the loss of his daughter to an overdose, and how the crisis has affected the legal community at the Robert H. Jackson Center on Thursday, October 25, 2018. This free event will be held at the Robert H. Jackson Center, 305 East 4th Street, Jamestown, NY.  Robert H. Jackson Center Executive Director Deke Kathman made the announcement.

The effect of the opioid crisis is heavy-handed, widespread and increasing in America.  Between 1999 and 2015, the number of drug overdose deaths in the United States involving opioids quadrupled, and approximately six out of ten overdose deaths now involve an opioid.  In 2016, the opioid-related overdose death rate in New York State was 15.1 per 100,000 persons, which was higher than that year’s national average of 13.3 per 100,000 persons.  Chautauqua County statistics are worse still, with an opioid-related overdose death rate for 2016 of 18.4 per 100,000 persons.

According to the U.S. Department of Health, 2.1 million people misuse prescription opioids.  This is in addition to the individuals that misuse illegal opioids, such as heroin.  Although prescription opioids are regulated by the federal government through the Controlled Substances Act, as well as locally by State Medical Boards, abuse of the drugs is still rampant.  At this point, many State Attorneys General are suing some of the largest pharmaceutical companies for their part in allegedly furthering the opioid crisis.

No one is immune from the reach of the crisis, it affects individuals across socioeconomic lines and professions, including the legal profession.  The public is invited to the Jackson Center at 2:00 p.m. for “The Opioid Crisis – It’s Personal,” a candid conversation with Justice Martoche on how this crisis personally affected him as a father and as a member of the Western New York legal community.

The opioid discussion is one component of the Jackson Center’s October 25th Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Program from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.  At 10:00 am that day, the Supreme Court of the State of New York Appellate Division, Fourth Department will hear oral arguments in a regular session of the Court in the Jackson Center’s Cappa Theatre.   Following oral arguments, the Appellate Court Justices will give a presentation concerning their view from the bench.  Principal Appellate Court Attorney Chris Lindquist will follow the justices with a presentation on the attorney disciplinary process and recent developments. Justice Martoche’s interview will begin at 2:00 pm.  The Jamestown Bar Association will provide lunch to attendees at 12:00 p.m. and a reception after 3:00 pm.   CLE credit information for New York and Pennsylvania is published on the Jackson Center website.  Guests are asked to register for the CLE online at www.roberthjackson.org/events, or by calling the Jackson Center at (716) 483–6646.

This program is sponsored by the Cattaraugus County Bar Association, Jamestown Bar Association, Northern Chautauqua County Bar Association and The Robert H. Jackson Center Inn of Court.