Webinar to Commemorate Statewide Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day

PDFNJ, NJ Attorney General’s Office and OEFA to Host 9th Webinar of 2023

Millburn, NJ, Oct. 02, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A national expert will outline the latest developments in the nationwide opioid epidemic in the next installment of the Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day Learning Series, organized by the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ), the Office of the New Jersey Coordinator for Addiction Responses and Enforcement Strategies (NJ CARES) and the Opioid Education Foundation of America (OEFA).

The webinar, “Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day: An Update from NIDA,” will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, October 6 in recognition of the eighth annual Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day in New Jersey. Dr. Wilson M. Compton, deputy director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) of the National Institutes of Health, will provide an overview of the opioid epidemic’s origins and the most recent developments in the crisis.

John Butler and Jennifer Fearon, policy advisors in the Office of the New Jersey Governor, will give opening remarks at the webinar and highlight the initiatives the Murphy Administration has taken to tackle the opioid epidemic.

“Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day is an important day in New Jersey,” said PDFNJ Executive Director Angelo Valente. “The main goal is to educate residents about opioids and the issues we are facing currently. This webinar will present a tremendous opportunity for concerned citizens to increase their understanding of the issue and make a difference in their community.”

The webinar will be the ninth in the 2023 Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day Learning Series. PDFNJ has hosted the series in collaboration with OEFA and NJ CARES, which is responsible for overseeing addiction-fighting efforts across the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General and has focused on educating the community on various topics related to prevention, treatment and recovery.

The Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day Learning Series began in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic to educate New Jersey residents on various aspects of the opioid epidemic and its impact on New Jersey and the nation. It is a branch of PDFNJ’s Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day statewide initiative, which has been held annually on October 6 since 2016 to educate residents and prescribers on the risks of prescription opioids and to raise awareness of the opioid crisis throughout the state.

The 2022 Learning Series included 12 webinars that drew a total audience of more than 8,000 participants and featured various speakers discussing all aspects of the opioid epidemic, including Sam Quinones, Author of “Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic”; Dr. Andrew Kolodny, Medical Director of Opioid Policy Research, Heller School for Social Policy and Management; and former New Jersey Governor James E. McGreevey. Other speakers included representatives from the Drug Enforcement Administration, New Jersey State Police, National Institute on Drug Abuse, New Jersey Department of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Governor’s Council on Alcohol and Drug Addiction and New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs.

NJ CARES data shows that more than 2,800 people in New Jersey died from suspected drug-related overdoses in 2022. A vast majority of these overdose deaths involved some form of opioid including prescription painkillers, heroin and synthetic opioids, such as fentanyl.

To learn more about Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day and for a schedule of webinars, please visit knockoutday.drugfreenj.org.


Best known for its statewide anti-drug advertising campaign, the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey is a private not-for-profit coalition of professionals from the communications, corporate and government communities whose collective mission is to reduce demand for illicit drugs in New Jersey through media communication. To date, more than $200 million in broadcast time and print space has been donated to the Partnership’s New Jersey campaign, making it the largest public service advertising campaign in New Jersey’s history. Since its inception the Partnership has garnered 217 advertising and public relations awards from national, regional and statewide media organizations.