Two honored for efforts against addiction

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Nashville Police Chief Thomas Bashore


Staff Writer

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Two Nashville residents have been recognized at the state level for their efforts helping opioid addicts recover.

Nashville Police Chief Tom Bashore and Heather Moore, founder of the Anchor Holds, have been presented with the Dogwood Award by N.C. Attorney General Josh Stein.

Bashore said he is honored to receive the award“Although I was chosen for this award, I accept it in the name of all those who work at UNC Nash General and Coastal Plain Hospital for their compassion and commitment to the HOPE Initiative,” he said.

Dogwoods are given to honor North Carolinians dedicated to keeping people safe, healthy and happy in their communities.

Bashore and Moore have worked tirelessly to confront the opioid crisis, Stein said.

“It is my distinct honor to highlight the work Chief Bashore and Heather Moore are doing in Nash County,” Stein said. “Today’s awards are a celebration of these people and their ideas — but it’s also a charge for all of us to continue to do more, keep innovating and keep fighting for the thousands of North Carolinians struggling with addiction.”

Bashore has served as police chief since 2012. He created the Nashville Police Department’s HOPE Initiative, which encourages opioid users to seek recovery without legal charges by helping users dispose of their substances and connecting them with treatment. Bashore earned a bachelor’s degree from Western Carolina University and master’s degree from Bellevue University. He's an Air Force veteran.

Moore was inspired by her experiences with her two adult sons in recovery to create the Anchor Holds in 2015. The nonprofit organization helps people with substance abuse find treatment and supports families who have loved ones struggling with substance abuse.

Stein said combating the opioid epidemic is a top priority for him. Since taking office in January, he has convened round table discussions in 18 communities across the state to share local strategies and perspectives. He's also initiated an investigation into the role of manufacturers and distributors in creating the crisis and has promoted legislative action to address it — including the STOP Act, which became law in June.

The Strengthen Opioid Misuse Prevention Act of 2017 is intended to reduce the supply of unused, misused and diverted opioids circulating within the state, reduce doctor shopping and improve care by requiring prescribers to use tools and resources to help prevent inappropriate prescribing of opioid pills.