“Courtney’s life spiraled out of control when she became dependent on opiates. After years of struggling with addiction, the 31-year-old Texas native heard about methadone treatment, a therapy in which patients take daily doses of medicine to control cravings for illicit opiates. Courtney enrolled as a patient at a methadone clinic outside Austin. She began visiting the clinic daily for a dose of methadone, which helped eliminate her cravings, and slowly, began to pick up the other pieces of her life. That changed the day she became the victim of illegal profiling by police.
Though it’s more the exception than the rule, methadone clinics across the country report harassment of patients by law enforcement. One study of methadone patients at 29 different locations in New York City reported that 40% of patients reported being stopped and frisked by police outside their clinic site and 70% reported witnessing police harassment of another person outside a methadone clinic.
Often it’s just one or two rogue officers with an ax to grind who cause most of the trouble, but the effects can be devastating. Harassing patients discourages people from seeking methadone therapy, a legal, effective, evidence-based treatment for the growing number of Americans dependent on opiates such as heroin or prescription pain pills.”
Source: Alternet.org – February 21, 2015