Stein highlighting opioid abuse in social media initiative

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Attorney General Josh Stein says he hopes a new social media initiative addressing the opioid abuse crisis in North Carolina will raise awareness about the problem and give hope to those trying to recover from its addiction.

Stein’s office plans to host weekly “conversations” on Facebook and Twitter starting Tuesday, which is labeled North Carolina Addiction Recovery Day. Participants are urged to file posts attached with the hashtag “opioidsurvivor.”

The Attorney General’s Office said similar social media events will be held every Tuesday.

Stein and state legislators are looking at how to address the surge in addictions to heroin, OxyContin and other opium-based drugs. State health statistics show there were nearly 250 heroin deaths in the state in 2014.