The Angel Initiative - Helping Drug Addicts Find Treatment
Cops Light The Way With the "Angel Initiative" drug addicts in Gloucester are able to approach police and find help instead of being arrested. This project, which started in June of 2015, has seen over four hundred drug addicts willingly submit to authorities in order to find treatment. New England Journal of Medicine conducted a study on this new initiative and reported that 94 percent of those who approached police authorities were able to go directly to a drug rehab center.
Waiting For An Angel
Drug addicts who make contact with law enforcement agents and are seeking help are brought to a hospital facility where they wait for a volunteer from the police department. These volunteers are referred to as "angels" and offer the individual seeking treatment emotional support. The drug addicts are then sent to rehab facilities which have partnered up with the local police department. From there, their road to healing begins.
Immediate Help For Drug Addicts
Drug possession in Massachusetts is still considered a criminal offence. However, those who are willing to seek professional help and give up their drugs are not arrested. Insurance companies are to cover each patients' detox treatment for at least one week as per Massachusetts law. This guarantees citizens the right to receive treatment. Addicts who made contact with the police or made their way to the police station received immediate help.
No Judgement For Those Seeking Help
Reports show that individuals who have successfully turned over their drugs and enrolled in drug treatment stated that they did not feel judged or stigmatized. Drug addicts who sought help by making contact with the police department were able to feel safe. This positive interaction has helped hundreds of drug addicts get the help that they need. An initiative like this is proof that a large number of drug addicts are willing to seek treatment.