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By Sana Fadel, Rosie’s Place Policy Coordinator




Of all the guests at Rosie’s Place, those living with addiction have been among the hardest for whom to secure services. These women are in need of much more support in achieving sobriety and getting the pieces of their lives back together. Society has deemed addicts a group who are morally weak and therefore not worthy of assistance. Yet, with treatment, social supports, and de-stigmatization of the disease of addiction, those in recovery are now productive members of society.

When someone is asking for help, it is takes a lot of courage to say “I am ready” knowing they will physically have to go through withdrawal and emotionally have to deal with the hardships of life that they have found an escape from by drinking or drugging. Some are ready because they hit rock bottom and feel that their only choice is to die or be clean. Others are seeking treatment to gain custody of their children and get a better life for their families.

Treatment works, but it needs our investment in ensuring that it is comprehensive and long-term. When treatment is not there, addiction casts its toll on both the person with living with addiction and on society. The crime and violence associated with addiction is too well known to our communities. Addiction imposes economic costs on the criminal justice, child welfare, healthcare and education systems. Controlling the demand for drugs with treatment would significantly improve the quality of life not only of the women we serve, but also in many of our communities.

In October, Governor Romney said that the drug epidemic in Massachusetts has “snuck up on us”. With three consecutive years of de-investment in substance abuse treatment, it did not sneak up on us. It was ignored! Massachusetts has the highest rate of heroin use in the nation. The federal government has consistently placed Massachusetts among the worst states in meeting the need for treatment

Rosie’s Place, working alongside a diverse coalition, is embarking on a policy campaign to increase access to substance abuse treatment. Our primary priority is to ensure that the right treatment is available to those most in need.

Through this campaign, Rosie’s Place hopes to convince policy makers that treatment is a public investment that not only makes moral sense, but financial sense as well.

To get involved in this campaign or to show your support for recovery, please email Sana Fadel, Public Policy Coordinator at Rosie’s Place at [email protected] or call 617-442-9322 x 201.

  

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