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Harford County, MD, is taking major steps to helping opiate addicts by incorporating The Adult Opiate Recovery Court pioneered by the District Court of Maryland. Harford County joins 36 other drug treatment courts in Maryland, and the statistics show it is well needed there. Harford County reported 290 heroin overdoses in 2016, 56 of which were fatal (compared to 201 overdoses and 27 fatalities in 2015). As in many other counties, while awareness and prevention efforts have increased substantially on the part of lawmakers and community activists, opiate overdoses continue to climb, making the need for solutions that much more urgent.

Adult Opiate Recovery Court in Harford County


The Adult Opiate Recovery Court program lasts for one year, and accepts up to 40 people at a time; a 2 year aftercare program follows. The program gives addicts much-needed structure and supervision while connecting them with resources and services they need to kick their opioid dependency. It is limited to those who are arrested on drug-related charges, and the eligible persons but have a diagnosed opioid dependency. Drug courts work with the criminal justice system and local service and healthcare providers to give addicts a second chance, rather than focusing on imprisonment or criminal punishments. Standard drug-related penalties are set aside in favor of rehabilitation.

As we have noted before here on our blog, this approach is much more beneficial and effective for those struggling with an addiction. As the country moves towards a more tolerant and understanding attitude towards addiction, and begins to see it as a disease and not a “moral failing,” the approach taken is likely to shift substantially. Imprisoning addicts with little to no recovery or addiction treatment offered accomplishes nothing aside from wasting financial resources and contributing to the stigma surrounding addiction. An addict that is locked up, when not given the tools they need to recover from the mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects of addiction, will almost always return to using when they are released, often ending them up in a continuous cycle of crime, overdose, and incarceration. Real assistance and treatment needs to be offered, in addition to programs that help them find legitimate employment and get back on their feet, so that they have a real chance at true recovery.

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If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, the professional staff at Serenity Acres is ready to help. Call today for your free confidential assessment, to see if inpatient treatment may be the answer you are looking for: 1-800-203-2024.