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Forum on risky teen behavior -- News Roundup

Last spring, the Bainbridge Island School District and School Board initiated a gathering of agencies and organizations on the island to consider ways to build healthy habits for youth and strong resources for parents.

This fall, the group coalesced, creating the Just Know Bainbridge Coalition for youth and parents.

The group plans to roll out a series of events and forums, beginning Nov. 15.

“Just Know: Facts About Drugs, Alcohol and Adolescence” will be held 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Bainbridge High School LGI room.

The keynote speaker will be Justice Phil Talmadge, candidate for Washington governor.

The goal is to create a priority in the island culture that promotes healthy choices and discourages risky behaviors.

“We want to build a base of parental knowledge and awareness, so they can engage their children in conversations around safe and healthy choices,” said Superintendent Ken Crawford in a news release.

School board member Bruce Weiland commented, “We want to incite vigorous community discussion around youth substance abuse.”

Just Know currently includes representatives from Bainbridge Youth Services, Boys and Girls Club, Imagine Bainbridge, It’s About Time for Kids, the police department, the fire department, the school board, and staff and administrators from the schools.

Just Know represents a unified commitment to the future of our children through a connected community. Meeting weekly since Sept. 10, the coalition has identified their goals and initial plans.

At the November forum, Superintendent Crawford will set the framework in his opening remarks, offering an overview of local needs. Participants will then choose two of four workshops being offered.

Workshop topics include: marijuana abuse and addiction in adolescence; an overview of specific drugs, pharmacological actions and brain chemistry; a professional panel discussion of the potential legal, monetary and health ramifications of unchaperoned parties; and teenage depression.

The event, which includes a boxed lunch, is free.

For more information and to register for the forum, visit the Bainbridge Island School District website at www.bainbridge.wednet.edu, or call the Community Relations Office at 780-1398.

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***Sessions on memorial park

The National Park Service is planning public workshops on Bainbridge Island and in Seattle to obtain public input on the possibility of bringing the site of the Eagledale ferry dock into the National Park system.

The site, at the foot of Taylor Avenue at the south shore of Eagle Harbor, was the point at which Bainbridge Island’s Japanese-Americans were taken from the island in March of 1942 and sent to an internment camp in California.

The island was the site of the first evacuation undertaken as part of the World War II relocation of Japanese and Japanese-Americans from the West Coast.

The Bainbridge Island meetings will take place at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Nov. 5 in the City Council chambers at City Hall.

The Seattle meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Nov. 6 at the Japanese Baptist Church, 160 Broadway, Seattle.

The NPS study is being undertaken according to legislation sponsored by island resident Rep. Jay Inslee (D.-1st Dist.).

Conducted by a team made up of federal and local officials and citizens, the study will assess the site’s “national significance, suitability and feasibility ... as a unit of the National Park System,” according to a news release.

The Bainbridge Island Japanese American Community and the area Interfaith Council are planning a memorial park for the area, which includes the road-end and an as-yet undetermined amount of adjoining land to the east.

The land to the east is part of a 50-acre site formerly owned by the Wyckoff Company, which is currently being cleaned up by the Environmental Protection Agency to remove contamination left by decades of manufacturing the wood preservative creosote.

The city is currently raising funds in an effort to acquire the site and make it into a park.

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