Community, Teamwork And Fresh Thinking May Help Combat Heroin Use

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Coming together is an excellent first step when it comes to dealing with the heroin epidemic across the US and Canada. As we’ve discussed and observed before heroin is no longer just an urban problem but is hitting small communities all across North America. Where there has been success in curbing the use of heroin we’ve seen community leaders, police, doctors and addiction treatment facilities working hand in hand in order to deal with the growing problem. Not a bad start, especially when these various representatives of small towns and cities begin to focus their efforts on prevention rather than tough enforcement and expensive initiatives to crack down on small time, drug related offenses. The small community of Lynn in the United States has seen heroin’s death toll rise significantly in the last year, and like other parts of the country they’ve begun to take appropriate action, but authorities and drug experts there believe that despite all their heroic measures to keep heroin out of their community, believe that the most realistic (and possibly the best) method to winning this war will be to get the parents as involved as possible in order to stop the problem at it’s source, which often lies in teens and young adults.

 Heroin’s death toll hit a record level in Lynn last year and Police Chief Kevin Coppinger said a key weapon in reducing drug deaths is at-home early prevention efforts by parents. “It’s got to start in the home. Parents have to step up, know what kids are doing and where they are,” Coppinger told more than 300 people gathered in North Shore Community College’s gymnasium on Friday.

Where there is tragedy there isn’t always hope, but for Lynn firefighter Timothy Lawrence the heroin problem has become a personal cause. He lost his daughter to the terrible substance many years ago, which has inspired him to become active in his home town and a true advocate when it comes to dealing with the terrible disease of addiction and in particular the heroin problem which not only claimed his daughter’s life but many others.

The focus in Lynn is prevention now, but that won’t help the parts of the community that are already addicted to heroin. State Senate representatives are apparently fielding many more calls than they used to from parents or loved ones desperately trying to get their friend or family member the treatment they need to help end their addiction cycle, but a lack of beds at various treatment facilities is hampering the efforts of those who simply want their loved ones to receive the care they need.

Because so many community advocates have stepped forward, whether they be police, judicial or private like addiction specialists, perhaps there is potential in Lynn to deal with the problem efficiently and compassionately. Prevention for the young, treatment for the adults and new laws being drafted in order to help, not punish. It’s a combination that may yet succeed, and the good guys trying to fight the heroin and the disease need all the help they can get.

 

VIA:ITEMLIVE

Community, Teamwork And Fresh Thinking May Help Combat Heroin Use