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Nov-06-2010 18:37printcomments

Connecticut Rewards Purdue Pharma for Keeping 'Youth Safe'

Connecticut awards criminally convicted Purdue Pharma; True Definition of the Word "Irony" -- Purdue Pharma honored for drug prevention efforts -- in keeping "youth safe"

Lt. Governor Michael Fedele
Lt. Governor Michael Fedele (left), and Jill Spineti, President and CEO of The Governor’s Prevention Partnership, join Alan Must of Ridgefield, Vice President, State Government and Legislative Affairs for Purdue Pharma L.P., at the 2010 Governor’s Luncheon.

(MYRTLE BEACH, S.C.) - "We have the incredible privilege of serving in the highest offices in the state. We must prove ourselves worthy of our fellow citizens' faith. We must be trusted to always place the public's good above our own and to always choose fairness over favoritism." - Governor Jodi Rell of Connecticut

Marianne Skolek

As hard a pill as it is to swallow, the criminals at Purdue Pharma were recently honored for their strong commitment to keeping Connecticut’s youth "safe, successful and drug-free." Purdue Pharma received the Leadership Award at the 20th Annual Governor’s Luncheon held by The Governor’s Prevention Partnership Oct. 20 at the Hartford Marriott in Farmington, CT. The award recognized Purdue Pharma for its "dedication to making a real difference in keeping Connecticut’s youth off drugs specifically through its funding and support of Regional Action Councils (RACs) across the state."

“Purdue Pharma has been a strong supporter of our efforts both financially and by committing time to our goal of keeping Connecticut’s youth drug-free,” said Jill K. Spineti, President and CEO of The Governor’s Prevention Partnership. “Their support has made it possible to do local work in communities across the state where we have achieved strong results. We’re honored to have Alan Must, Vice President for State, Government and Legislative Affairs of Purdue, serve on our board of directors and his support – along with the support of his company -- has been invaluable.”

“It’s an honor to give back to the community and to be part of the fight to keep Connecticut’s kids healthy and drug-free,” said Alan Must. “Purdue Pharma is deeply committed to increasing awareness of the dangers of abusing medications and to supporting prevention programs that help our youth resist drug abuse. We’re deeply honored to be receiving this award from The Governor’s Prevention Partnership.”

“Connecticut’s youth face an unprecedented series of dangers – drugs and alcohol, bullying, lack of positive role models – and Connecticut’s leaders from the public and private sectors – like Purdue -- have chosen to stand up and help,” Spineti added. “We are building the tools needed to keep Connecticut’s youth safe, successful and drug free so they can become part of a successful workforce tomorrow. A lot remains to be done, but we are succeeding and it’s because of leaders like Purdue Pharma, Alan Must and the many others who have chosen to support The Governor’s Prevention Partnership and the youth of Connecticut that we have come so far.”

With a focus on Connecticut’s youth, the Governor’s Prevention Partnership is a statewide public-private alliance, building a strong, healthy workforce through leadership in mentoring, and prevention of violence and bullying, underage drinking, alcohol and drug abuse.

Obviously Governor Jodi Rell and Jill Spineti don't have a problem with rewarding a company responsible for the epidemic of OxyContin death, abuse and addiction in every state in the country as well as Canada. Did they not care that in July 2007, the three CEO's of Purdue Pharma - Michael Friedman, Howard Udell and Paul Goldenheim pleaded guilty and were sentenced in Federal Court for misleading physicians and patients as to the addictive and abusive qualities of OxyContin? Three years later, Governor Rell and Miss Spineti feel it appropriate to reward Purdue Pharma for the holocaust of drug problems we have with youth and OxyContin. Shame on them!

For those parents who have lost children to OxyContin in death and addiction because of the criminal marketing by Purdue Pharma -- who will have empty chairs at the Thanksgiving table this month, below are telephone numbers for you to tell Governor Rell and Jill Spineti about "how Purdue Pharma kept your child safe" in their marketing of OxyContin -- and your outrage at any reward given to Purdue Pharma.

Maybe Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger of California can team with John Walsh of America's Most Wanted in giving Charles Manson an award for keeping youth safe in California -- I'm sure Governor Rell and Ms. Spineti can help Schwarzenegger and Walsh in coming up with something appropriate -- since they have no problem with rewarding convicted criminals. Purdue Pharma keeping youth safe -- give me a break.

Governor M. Jodi Rell - 860-566-4840
Jill Spineti, Connecticut Governor's Prevention Partnership
- 860-523-8042 or cell 860-989-6554

=========================================== Reporter Marianne Skolek, is an Activist for Victims of OxyContin throughout the United States and Canada. In July 2007, she testified against Purdue Pharma in Federal Court in Virginia at the sentencing of their three CEO's who pled guilty to charges of marketing OxyContin as less likely to be addictive or abused to physicians and patients. She also testified against Purdue Pharma at a Judiciary Hearing of the U.S. Senate in July 2007. Marianne works with government agencies and private attorneys in having a voice for her daughter Jill, who died in 2002 after being prescribed OxyContin, as well as the voice for scores of victims of OxyContin. She has been involved in her work for the past 7-1/2 years and is currently working on a book that exposes Purdue Pharma for their continued criminal marketing of OxyContin.

Marianne is a nurse having graduated in 1991 as president of her graduating class. She also has a Paralegal certification. Marianne served on a Community Service Board for the Courier News, a Gannet newspaper in NJ writing articles predominantly regarding AIDS patients and their emotional issues. She was awarded a Community Service Award in 1993 by the Hunterdon County, NJ HIV/AIDS Task Force in recognition of and appreciation for the donated time, energy and love in facilitating a Support Group for persons with HIV/AIDS.
You can send Marianne an email at:

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MaryAnn Kessler January 9, 2011 6:09 am (Pacific time)

This leaves me speechless. My son does 3 tears ago from an overdose of Oxycontin given to him by 3 doctors for a littlt electric shock that e got on his hand. One prescription was written for a 30 day supply and then renewed in 12 days with the doctors approval. This company should remain as far away from our youth as possible.

Traci November 19, 2010 9:20 am (Pacific time)

I can't believe this. It is beyond words how outrageous this is.

Carol Keating November 9, 2010 8:03 am (Pacific time)

ARE YOU KIDDING ME !!!! Just when you think you've seen it all, you get to see actual "murderers" get rewards!! That picture of all of them smiling makes me sick!

Joanne Peterson November 8, 2010 6:45 pm (Pacific time)

Just stood in front of a crowd in Brockton Massachusetts of OVER 100 heart broken parents and told them NOT TO BLAME THEMSLEVES for what has happened to thier kids to MAKE THAT CALL! NOT ONE OF US WOULD BE IN THAT ROOM IF IT WEREN"T FOR PURDUE PHARMA! It's time to FIGHT BACK! Purdue has gotten away with enough over the years! I too was at the sentencing and was one that testified as Marianne so bravely did. I never ever would have imagined seeing Purdue get and AWARD! Parents and family members are fired up, it's time to fight back for the dignity of our families and for thos who lost their lives or struggle today. I know many people have called and emailed today. I expect there will be MANY MORE TOMORROW! FIGHT BACK! THANK YOU MARIANNE FOR NEVER GIVING UP! We are behind you ALL THE WAY!

Trudy Avery November 8, 2010 2:17 pm (Pacific time)

Disgraceful! My son, Corey is now two years clean from Oxycontin. My family has been to hell and back, thanks in large part, to Perdue Pharma. I will be making my phone calls!

Liisa Bennett November 8, 2010 9:15 am (Pacific time)

OUTrageous.... this is so disheartening. After being present at Perdues sentencing in Va, I cannot believe this can happen. I have called the Governors office and sent an email. Perdue systematically destroyed families across the US and they get an award-- for PREVENTION? How about stopping the production of this evil minded drug.... I raised my child with love and taught him right from wrong -- I told him why he shouldnt do "drugs" and yet this drug entered my families life and we will NEVER be the same again -- different,yes.... forever... Shame on this Governor!

Marianne Skolek November 7, 2010 1:09 pm (Pacific time)

Joanne -- thank you for commenting on my article. I hope other outraged parents also take the time to comment. These comments are read by those responsible for this slap in the face to victims of OxyContin and their families. My hope is that their telephones ring non-stop tomorrow and both Rell and Spineti experience first hand how they should be ashamed of themselves for honoring Purdue Pharma.

Joanne Peterson November 7, 2010 11:12 am (Pacific time)

I find this to be disgusting! Purdue Pharma caused an epidemic of death and addiction in this country! They plead GUILTY to mismarketing the drug. How our country allows them to continue is beyond me. They use families as scape goats blaming them, I know thousands of families who WERE GOOD ROLE MODELS and wonderful parents! God help our children and families in this country. the Govenor of CT should do his homework on this, shame on him! Joanne Peterson Founder, Exec Director Learn to Cope (Masachusetts)

Joanne Peterson November 7, 2010 11:20 am (Pacific time)

Purdue Pharma who caused a nation wide epidemic of death and addiction get's an award? From a Govenor? I am in shock over this. Shame on him! Purdue uses families and I know thousands of them who WERE GOOD ROLE MODELS AND WONDERFUL PARENTS as scape goats. Only God knows how many people died after they knowingly mismarketed that drug and plead GUILTY to it! Now they are suddenly in the prevention business? JOKE! God help our children, those who have died and also those who struggle and many of them WERE LEGITIMATE PATIENTS! This is disgusting and a slap in the face to families all over this country. Connecticut, you should be very worried about this! Shame on the Govenor. We in Mass lost 3265 people to Opiate Overdose in two years compared to 78 soldiers in a foreign war in the same time period, what about the Pill Mills in Florida that Purdue sells their poison to? What does that tell you? Govenor, you should do your homework and rather than praised this company, kick them out of your state! Shame on you. Joanne Peterson Founder, Learn to Cope (Massachusetts) over 1700 families and 4 chapters across our small state, proof enough?

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