“A police program in northern Massachusetts that helps fast-track heroin addicts into treatment is catching on in other states and showing signs of reducing crimes associated with addiction.
Gloucester police say dozens of departments in nine states have taken a page from their ANGEL program, which gives addicts a chance to make treatment rather than arrest the first response they get from police.
Addicts can come to the police station and be connected to a treatment program if they commit to getting clean. They are assigned a volunteer “angel” — sometimes a recovering addict — who works with them. They can turn in their drugs and drug paraphernalia, no questions asked.
Police Chief Leonard Campanello developed the program that started in June, and says statistics suggest it may also help reduce crime. This summer, shoplifting, breaking and entering, and larceny were down 23 percent in Gloucester compared to the same season last year.”
Source: ChristianScienceMonitor.com – November 1, 2015