Opioid abuse awareness is at the heart of a series of town halls and other events going on around New Jersey right now to help stem the tide of this abuse epidemic.

A gathering in Cape May County on April 19 will help gauge how the issue is impacting local communities. The town halls are sponsored by the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey.

"This is going to be the 19th of 21 town halls throughout the state of New Jersey," Executive Director Angelo Valente said.

The purpose of these town halls is to get an idea of how the drugs impact local communities and how the local communities are responding.

The New Jersey School Boards Association will also address the opioid crisis with a conference for local school board members. It will be held Friday, April 13 at the Conference Center at Mercer County Community College.

Valente says the town halls will involve people of all ages and backgrounds involved in the opioid issue, "but also those who want to learn about how they can help protect their homes and their families from this epidemic."

The Knock Out Opioid Abuse town hall will be held on the April 19 at the Dennis Township Senior Center. It starts at 9 and ends at 11 a.m.. There will be breakfast provided.

Joe Cutter is the afternoon news anchor on New Jersey 101.5

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