Although it is no longer making the headlines, another pandemic in America rages on. A pandemic made worse by COVID-19.
There are lots of ideas about how to tackle addiction, many of them excellent ideas. But one concept is agreed upon amongst a considerable majority of Americans: We need to move away from the constant criminalization and incarceration of addicts and drug users.
For decades, the War on Drugs, part of a punitive, incarceration-based system has been the state and federal approach to crimes of drug possession and drug use. But a recent story in USA Today talked about a community in the Chicago area that is offering an olive branch to addicts.
In an age where the legality and use of drugs are heatedly debated, it’s big news when new data comes out regarding a popular drug and the real risks that its use carries. Case in point, there is a new development in the works regarding kratom, a natural, plant-based drug native to Southeast Asia.
Good news out of Tulsa, Oklahoma. The city implemented a “sobering center” about six months ago. A facility where individuals detained for public intoxication can go instead of jail. Sobering centers are good alternatives to jail time, as such centers specialize in referring addicts to addiction treatment and recovery instead of just putting them through time served.
Who would have thought that the American overdose epidemic of the 21st century would have led to a “silver lining” of sorts? Yes, though sadness and misery abound as the death toll from drugs peaked sixty-four thousand in 2016, one silver lining in the morass of depression from the death toll…