Substance Abuse Task Force brings community leaders together

Local News

OAK HILL, WV (WVNS) — It is a hot topic talked about all over the state: drug addiction. The Fayette County Substance Abuse Task Force wants to dive deeper into the conversation and work towards a solution..

At a conference Tuesday, multiple leaders in the community worked towards a common goal: ending this issue. Jon Dower traveled from Morgantown to talk about the success in his Quick Response Team.

“They’re individuals that have walked a mile in this person’s shoes and they know how to talk to them like a human being with dignity and respect. And they also know how to make the linkage between that person and the appropriate recovery process for them,” Dower said.

Organizers are hoping this testimony will help Fayette County leaders develop a similar program. Often the first people on scene who come in contact with addicts are police. A program called LEAD, or Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion, uses law enforcement officers to make connection with those abusing drugs. Scott Goodson is the coordinator of the LEAD program with FMRS.

“The law enforcement agency can make the call to arrest the individual or contact the LEAD program. The LEAD program will come on site to evaluate the suspect or individual and proceed into some treatment programs, start a case management program on the offender,” Goodson said.

By bringing the different agencies together, they hope to combat addiction effectively and save lives. A solution to an issue that affects everyone, is only going to happen if everyone works together.

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