- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 28, 2015

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) - Manchester’s police chief is hosting a forum for the public to talk about those who are adversely affected by opiate and heroin addiction.

Chief Nick Willard is one of seven panel members conducting Tuesday’s forum at the Salon Ballroom from 5 to 7 p.m. The forum will include the city’s fire and health departments, youth coalitions and recovery groups.

A similar forum was recently hosted by the Merrimack Police Department.

State officials and treatment providers say New Hampshire has a growing problem of heroin and prescription drug abuse. Between 2013 and 2014, the number of heroin-related deaths jumped 40 percent and fentanyl-related deaths increased 650 percent. More than 300 people died from drug overdoses in 2014, and police say 2015 numbers are likely to top that.

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