Presentation to help police assist people suffering from addiction

Franklin County
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GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The opioid task force of Franklin County hosted a presentation on Monday about how the Police Assisted Addiction Recovery Initiative can help those suffering from addiction.

The program aims to create a non-arrest pathway to treatment and recovery. 22News spoke to Allie Hunter, the executive program director about if this effort would work in Franklin County.

“This is a growing nationwide movement of police recognizing that they have a front row seat to the opioid epidemic and are in a unique position to save lives,” Hunter explained. “By recognizing addiction as a disease — not a crime — they’re able to provide pathways and access points to treatment and recovery. I’m here today to see what the community is doing and how PAARI might be able to assist.”

Because of the initiative, a national network of more than 465 police departments in 33 states support non-arrest or early diversion program models that reach people before they enter the criminal justice system.

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