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Abuse, neglect of children often goes hand-in-hand with parents’ drug use

Editor’s note: This is the sixth in a multi-part series where the Border Belt Independent looks at what has changed since The News Reporter’s six-part series in 2017 that reported on the opioid crisis and associated mental health issues. Today, Reporter Ivey Schofield looks at how children are impacted by parents’ drug use and how schools, social services, Boys and Girls Homes and other agencies …Read more Continue reading Abuse, neglect of children often goes hand-in-hand with parents’ drug use

Drug treatment options exist, but many don’t know where to find them

Editor’s note: This is the fifth in a multi-part series where the Border Belt Independent looks at what has changed since The News Reporter’s six-part series in 2017 that reported on the opioid crisis and associated mental health issues. Today, Reporter Ivey Schofield looks at what treatment options for addiction are available and where people can find them in the county.  By Ivey SchofieldBBI Writer …Read more Continue reading Drug treatment options exist, but many don’t know where to find them

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Drug treatment program leads to sobriety, sisterhood

Editor’s note: This is the fourth in a multi-part series where the Border Belt Independent looks at what has changed since The News Reporter’s six-part series in 2017 that reported on the opioid crisis and associated mental health issues. Today, Reporter Ivey Schofield looks at how women at the Rose House in Whiteville work to overcome addiction. By Ivey SchofieldBBI Writer Eleven women gather in …Read more Continue reading Drug treatment program leads to sobriety, sisterhood

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Sheriff: Columbus drug crime is a ‘bad situation’

  Editor’s note: This is the second in a multi-part series where the Border Belt Independent looks at what has changed since The News Reporter’s six-part 2017 series on the opioid crisis and associated mental health issues. Today, Reporter Ivey Schofield looks at how law enforcement officials, an attorney and local support agencies view drugs through the lens of crime. Ivey SchofieldBBI Writer Drugs in …Read more Continue reading Sheriff: Columbus drug crime is a ‘bad situation’

‘We need to have a reformation:’ Opioid use continues to wreck lives across Columbus

Editor’s note: This is the first in a seven-part series that looks at what has changed since The (Whiteville) News Reporter’s series in 2017 that reported on the opioid crisis and associated mental health issues. Today, Reporter Ivey Schofield looks at how opioid misuse became prevalent, how prescription policies have changed, and how heroin has begun to replace harder-to-get opiates like oxycodone.  By Ivey Schofield …Read more Continue reading ‘We need to have a reformation:’ Opioid use continues to wreck lives across Columbus

Nonprofit helps build future leaders in southeastern North Carolina

By Ivey Schofield iveyschofield@borderbelt.org After her mother died in 2009, Alyssa Delts didn’t expect to find a new family.  The next year, when she was 11, her social worker signed her up for a summer camp with Men and Women United For Youth and Families. That’s when Delts found a group of people that continues to support her more than a decade later. Founded in …Read more Continue reading Nonprofit helps build future leaders in southeastern North Carolina

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‘Our children need more voices.’ Southeastern NC seeks volunteers to help kids in court

At 4 a.m. each weekday morning, attorney Bryan Wilson grabs a cup of coffee and looks over dozens of files of neglected and abused children from southeastern North Carolina. It’s his job to make sure they’re safe during the months — and sometimes years — that their cases trudge through the court system.  Hours later at the Bladen County Courthouse, Wilson ticks through a series …Read more Continue reading ‘Our children need more voices.’ Southeastern NC seeks volunteers to help kids in court

Indigenous women, Lumbee

‘An attack on our people:’ North Carolina’s missing and murdered Indigenous women

When Lisa Hardin didn’t return to her southeastern North Carolina home in the summer of 2003, her mother knew something was wrong.  Days later, police found the body of 36-year-old Hardin in the woods on the east side of Lumberton in Robeson County. Her orange Harley Davidson T-shirt was pulled over her chest, and her underwear was twisted around her right ankle. She had been …Read more Continue reading ‘An attack on our people:’ North Carolina’s missing and murdered Indigenous women

International Paper

Howard: Internet access a barrier for Columbus development

This is the second installment of a series about economic development in the Border Belt, which encompasses Bladen, Columbus, Robeson and Scotland counties.  For years, Jeff Howard watched eastern Columbus County struggle to create opportunities for people because of poor internet access. The pandemic has made it even worse.  “When you go from just a few people needing internet access to everyone needing it, that’s …Read more Continue reading Howard: Internet access a barrier for Columbus development

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Workforce is key to capitalizing on agribusiness and population growth in Columbus

Editor’s note: This is the second in a series of stories that provides an overview of the economies of Bladen, Columbus, Robeson, and Scotland counties in southeastern North Carolina. The 954 square miles of vast farmland and forests have shaped Columbus County’s economy for generations.  “We can grow anything,” said Columbus County Economic Development Director Gary Lanier. “Because of our farming heritage, we also have …Read more Continue reading Workforce is key to capitalizing on agribusiness and population growth in Columbus