2019 Empty Chair CampaignPosted: 09/20/2019
The Empty Chair Campaign brings attention to the loved ones who are missing from dinner tables across our community because of the war on drugs. In 2017, nearly 300 people died in Knox County due to a drug overdose. The number of overdoses increased countywide by 33 percent in a single year. As we wait for 2018 data to be analyzed and reported, we remember our sons, daughters, sisters, brothers and friends who are gone because of addiction and the lethal drugs that are accessible in our community.
In partnership, the Knox County District Attorney General’s Office and the Knoxville Police Department host a support group for parents, children, siblings and other family members who have lost a loved one to the drug overdose epidemic. The purpose of the support group is to show people who have lost a loved one that they are not alone. Collectively, group members raise awareness and work to turn the tide. Members of the group organize community events and create awareness campaigns, like the Empty Chair Campaign. During the week of September 23, the Knox County District Attorney General’s Office is participating in the support group’s Empty Chair Campaign by placing a chair and pictures of individuals who died due to a drug overdose, submitted by their loved ones, outside of its main lobby in the City County Building.
Individuals who have lost someone to drug overdose and is interested in the group can attend without registering or signing up. Meetings are held once a month from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. at the Knoxville Police Department Safety Building’s City Court Room. All scheduled dates are listed below. If you have questions or would like additional information, contact Tracee Smith at (865) 215-3875.
Upcoming Drug Overdose Support Group Meetings
- October 11, 2019
- November 8, 2019
- December 13, 2019
- January 10, 2020
- February 14, 2020
- March 13, 2020
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, visit https://www.all4knox.org/, for community resources and information.