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Speak Out
How should towns handle their drug crisis?

September 29, 2015

By Jeremy Quattlebaum, Student Voices staff writer 

On March 6, Leonard Campanello, police chief for Gloucester, Mass., posted a somber announcement on Facebook. He wrote: “Since January of this year, we have responded to dozens of opiate related overdoses and, unfortunately, the City has seen 4 deaths in this time that are heroin related.” He continued, saying that “4 deaths is 4 too many.” The New England town of 30,000 people is, like many small cities across the country, facing drug overdoses and deaths from opiates like heroin or Oxytocin.

Troubled by the deaths, the police chief announced a dramatic change in how the city would deal with people who abuse drugs. Campanello wrote: “If you are a user of opiates or heroin, let us help you. We know you do not want this addiction. We have resources here in the City that can and will make a difference in your life. Do not become a statistic.”

On May 4, Campanello unveiled the city’s new procedure for addressing opiate drug abuse. Taking to Facebook again, the police chief wrote: “Any addict who walks into the police station with the remainder of their drug equipment (needles, etc) or drugs and asks for help will NOT be charged. Instead we will walk them through the system toward detox and recovery. We will assign them an ‘angel’ who will be their guide through the process. Not in hours or days, but on the spot.”

The post received over 33,000 likes and sparked a debate both online and in governments around the country about the issue. As of September 10, 2015, 153 people had entered the program.

Drug overdoses and deaths, once considered a problem mainly in urban areas, have skyrocketed in suburban and rural areas in the past decade. From 2010 to 2013, the number of deaths from drug overdoses has nearly doubled, most occurring in smaller towns.

Gloucester’s shift from punishment to treatment has been divisive. In Maine, another state witnessing an upswing in opiate addiction, Gov. Paul LePage has played down drug treatment options and stresses tougher enforcement of laws and punishment to combat drug abuse. The governor has asked the state to budget an extra $2 million to hire more law enforcement officers and prosecutors to focus on the drug trade. He has said he may call in the state’s National Guard to help. “We must hunt down the dealers and get them off the streets,” LePage said in March 2014.

LePage’s stance is similar to what other governments have been doing since the 1970s. Facing a rising heroin epidemic in New York, then-Gov. Nelson Rockefeller signed into law tough crime measures that included lengthy prison sentences for low-level drug offenses. These tough drug laws were replicated across the country.

LePage’s tough stance conflicts with the views of two police chiefs in Maine who want to duplicate Gloucester’s program in their cities. Augusta Police Chief Robert Gregoire said in a Portland Press Herald interview that “I really think it’s innovative” and invited Campanello to speak to interested parties in Augusta. He already has begun to look for “angels,” people who will assist addicts who enter a treatement program and will guide them through recovery. Interim Police Chief Jeffery Lange of Paris, Maine, also has shown interest in Gloucester’s program.

Gloucester’s program has been praised by other law enforcement and elected officials. U.S. Sen. Angus King of Maine and U.S. drug czar Michael Botticelli both have expressed support.

Others in law enforcement who have indicated interest have been cautious to show complete support. Portland Police Chief Michael told the Portland Press Herald: “You need to look at what can work for your community and we’re looking at everything. We’re not sitting around waiting. The problem of substance abuse tends to run in phases, but there is an urgency right now and it’s good to see the community interested – and I hope invested.”

In Gloucester, Campanello has been flooded with inquiries from the press and other interested parties. Posting to Facebook on June 6, the police chief relayed a message that got to the core of the policy change. He wrote: “A reporter asked one of my officers last night: ‘Do you see a common thread in all addicts?’ Without hesitation, the officer responded: ‘Absolutely...they’re all human beings.’”

What do you think?

Is Gloucester’s new drug policy a good idea? Should drug addicts be sent to treatment centers or put in jail? Are there other ways towns and cities can fight drug abuse? Join the discussion and let us know what you think!
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Comments
10/15/2018
Washington
Alex
Shorecrest High School
I think that drug control should be treatment based. If getting people to stop doing drugs is done by threatening them, then people are less likely to get help, and will probably do more drugs to deal with the stress. Many drug addicts want to end their addictions, but fear arrest if they attempt to get help. If people are offered help to stop taking drugs, more people will be willing to actually get that help instead of avoiding the police and everyone else.

2/23/2018
Murrieta
Megan
Jabro/MCA
In my opinion, sending drug addicts to rehab as opposed to jail will result in a better overall outcome for cities across the nation. It allows for an opportunity to correct bad habits and become a contributing factor to society. Therefore, I agree with Gloucester's new policy. His idea of reform instead of punishment is a step towards a brighter future.

3/28/2017
Cochran.Georgia
LeQuan
Mr.l
People shouldn't be do drugs at all. Drugs has bad reaction on a human body it kill most of your brain cells. city's police should stop drugs from coming into there town.The town police should? be able to get people off the streets. Drug has killed many of people

12/5/2016
Murrieta/CA
Julia
Jabro/MCA
I feel that people who have a drug addiction should get the right treatment first. Because sending them to jail, while they still have an addiction can lead to more problems. For instance, the abuser trying to find drugs in jail. Which is very easy to get might I add.

12/5/2016
magnolia, TX
julio
magnolia west high school
I think this way should be done in everytown all over the us not only with heroin and oxytocin but with every other drug there is. It can help a lot of towns reduce the drug related deaths all over the us if this is done in every town. People could find help by just going to the police station and turning in all there drug substances they use. In return the officers wont charge them with ANY crime but instead will give them help on the spot where it wont take hours or days. This will also increase the number of jobs if alot of drug abusers turn all there stuff in to the police stations they will need help to get them through the process of making them better.

11/14/2016
Murrieta/CA
Elizabeth
Mr.Jabro/MCA
I believe that people who are addicted to these kinds of drugs should be sent to get help instead of sending them to jail. Because putting them in a cell won't help them stop from what there so addicted to.

11/10/2016
Murrieta Ca
Brittany
MCA/Jabro
drug addicts should be sent to treatments instead of jail or prision so they can get the proper help they needs

11/10/2016
Murrieta/CA
Evans James Samus
Mr. Jabro
I think Gloucester's idea would help work out the problems that is face world wide. I think drug addicts should have both the treatment center and be put in jail. If they don't let the treatment get to them then they should be put in jail.

11/9/2016
Murrieta,Ca
jabril
Mr. Jabro Murrieta Valley academy
I would rather most people get help because jail is not going to help at all, they wont be getting help and as soon as they get out they will go straight back to their old ways.So i think the policy is a good idea.

11/2/2016
Murrieta/CA
Bryson
Mr. Jabro
I believe that detoxing the addicted should be top priority and that the prosecution of the dealers and their suppliers should come after, time is limited and that is especially true for those who we don't know are addicted.

10/28/2016
CA
Jonathan
Jabro
Towns could handle their drug crisis by letting people take drugs at their own risk. They could also make some police officers take off their uniform and look like street people. Police could also pretend to be drug dealers and buy the drugs then just keep them and possibly stop some drug dealing. That might be better than having police officers wear their uniforms cause then they might just get shot or not be able to stop any drugs.

10/26/2016
Murrieta / CA
Matthew
Mr.Jabro / MCA
I would say that Gloucester's program would be the ideal way of solving the problems that many cities nationwide face. By lending a helping hand to those who use drugs on the daily and lifting them back on their feet i think we can fight drug abuse. Being put in jail would only put a minor buffer on the addicts. By consulting with the addicts and understanding why they do drugs and giving them the help that they need i think we'd get closer to saving our streets from drugs.

10/25/2016
Caliifornia
River
MCA
I think Gloucester's program is great in helping the people who have become addicted to drugs by reaching out to those individuals and guide them in the direction of a clean and healthy lifestyle. Without punishment on addiction from the police force, to have been addicted is punishment enough.

10/25/2016
california
Sonny Martinez
Mr.Jabro MCA
I think that drug addicts deserve treatment I personally have had family members addicted to heroin and other drugs and getting the help for them to be clean is better than just putting them in jail because in jail drug trade still happens so a secure place would be better than just putting them in jail to possibly continue their addiction

10/24/2016
Sidney, MT
Allyson
Mr. Lewis/Sidney High School
I absolutely think that Gloucester's new drug policy is a good idea. It's a way to let people honestly admit that they have a drug abuse problem and is a way for them to get help before it progresses even farther and potentially lead to their death. I think that drug addicts should be sent to treatment centers rather than being put into jail. Yes, it is illegal what they're doing. But, I do not think that it is something that they should be punished/put in jail for. They have a real problem that they need help with and I guaruntee over half these people want to stop their addictions but they do not know how and do not know who to ask for help. If they do something bad while being on these drugs, I do think that they should be punished for the bad action. But if they are simply just doing/on the drug/drugs, I think they just need to get help from a treatment center. I honestly do not think that there is a way that towns and cities can fight drug abuse. I think that no matter what, people are going to do drugs if they want too. No one can really stop them from doing it, unless being put in jail of course, and there's no way you can really just stop someones addiction without getting them the proper help.

10/24/2016
Sidney
Diego
Brad
I think that people who sell drugs should go to jail,but i don't think that everyone that does drugs is a bad person. i believe that if you do drugs you should get help not be sent to jail and have to suffer. This will eventually help thousands of people.

10/24/2016
sidney/mt
Millson
Faulhaber/Sidney
Different drugs should be handled differently charge wise. Hard drugs like heroin, cocaine, meth and other things should be charged more than just marijuana

9/20/2016
Middlesboro, Ky
zan
Ms. Anderson
I don't think a treatment center is going to help. We already have rehabs for people who want help and sometimes they even get a choice of rehab or jail. I think the jails are too piled up and taking our tax dollars already. I believe if they choose that life then i don't think they deserve help. We see too much of what drugs can do to people. In my opinion drugs are not addiction, it is choice. So just send them somewhere and let them suffer all together.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro/KY
Katrina
Ms. Anderson/ Middlesboro High School
Drug addicts don't need to go to jail its a waste of time and space for those who actually need to be in jail. In my opinion I think if people have drug problems they need help more than punishment, punishment will just make them want to do it more when they get out. But those who do sell drugs need to be in jail.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro, Ky
zan
Ms. Anderson
I don't think a treatment center is going to help. We already have rehabs for people who want help and sometimes they even get a choice of rehab or jail. I think the jails are too piled up and taking our tax dollars already. I believe if they choose that life then i don't think they deserve help. We see too much of what drugs can do to people. In my opinion drugs are not addiction, it is choice. So just send them somewhere and let them suffer all together.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro
Becky
Middlesboro High School
I think the drug policy is a benefit to some. If someone has an addiction, it is hard to come off & most of the time, jail is not going to work. Punishment for it isn't going to help. You would have to want this for yourself.

9/20/2016
middlesboro KY
kelsey
mrs. anderson middlesboro independent school
everybody takes it seriously and it has ruined so many lives and broken so many hearts. people are not caring about stuff that they should be caring about instead they care about drugs and nothing but drugs.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro/Kentucky
Jacob
Mrs.Anderson/MHS
I think that drug addicts should get help.While some don't want to quit, there are some who want to.Those who want to quit have no help in doing so.They shouldn't get sent to prison if it is not their fault they can't quit.The best option is sending them to rehab.If those in rehab get better maybe other drug addicts would want to go to rehab to.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro
Keyana
Ms. Anderson
I agree with the new Gloucester drug policy. Most times its hard for an addict to admit to themselves that they have a problem, and putting them in jail for a few months and then letting them back on the street isn´t going to make any difference. Theyll go right back to the group of people they knew 3 months ago and right back to their habits. I do think that they should spend time in jail because they did commit a crime, but after that treatment should be required. Otherwise, punishment is pointless. Going to jail will show them that they aren´t excluded from the consequences and then treatment will assure them that they can do better.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro, Ky
Avery
Middlesboro High School
I think this is good aproach. Everyone deserves help. Drugs are very addicting and can cause others to get addicted also. This could help many people.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro KY
Megan
Anderson/Middlesboro High School
I think that this policy will help many addicts because they will not be punished for their addictions, but help them overcome their problems.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro/KY
Jane
Middlesboro High School
I think their new drug policy is a good idea. Drug addicts should be sent to all one place and it be a treatment center for them. There's probably no other way cities can fight drug abuse besides cutting it off at the root; which means getting rid of the people who make it. But, then again, we have also been attempting to do this for years.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro, KY
Jessie B
MHS
I think the new drug policy is a great idea and will help a bunch of people who need this type of assistance. Without a doubt I believe they should be sent to treatment centers, Jail is a place for criminals not people who are victims of addiction. Also, in prison they would not receive the help they need and when they get out they would probably go right back to doing what they were doing before. In rehab they would have a bigger chance of getting better and being able to live a normal life. I think other towns should try to follow the lead of Gloucester's new policy because it could really make a difference in people's lives.

9/20/2016
middlesboro
mady
mrs anderson
i think it is a good idea however i dont believe it will work because people who are on drugs like it and want to countine to stay on drugs not many people are willing to to turn themselves in. knowing that they will get years in jail or prison. many people dont want to get in trouble for something as simple as drugs.

9/20/2016
middlesboro kentucky
john
middlesboro high school
i think that it is the worst thing in the world . The drug problem is a serious problem in our aera it has destroyed many peoples lives and famalies and it has also saused several deaths in our area to. The drug problem needs to be stopped and stopped immediatey.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro/Ky
Tevin
Ms. Anderson/Middlesboro High School
i think that convicted drug dealers of a minimal charge should be sentence for 3 months, depending on the charge and crime, will determine the sentence. I also think that drug labs, dope corners, and ghettos should be raided for the main source of the supplier. i think we should worry more about the more hardcore drugs(meth, cocaine, prescription, crack) than minor drugs(marijuana, alcohol).

9/20/2016
Middlesboro Kentucky
Jessica
Ms.Anderson Middlesboro Highschool
People need to accept help. The honest human should realize they have a problem and accept help. I feel treatment is a more humane deal to take care of people who have a difficulties getting off of drugs. I agree with the statement that the offering of treatment is more effective that just locking the addicts up. They are people who have just made bad choices and helping them beat the addiction is going to help them stay clean and out of trouble.

9/20/2016
middlesboro
paul
mrs anderson
I think the new drug policy is very beneficial. I think that different drugs should be handled in different ways depending on the drug and the amount of drugs on one person. Most people on drugs are link and if you catch one you should be able to catch the people who are selling and dealing.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro, Ky
Katie
Mrs.Anderson/MiddlesboroHighSchool
Knowing very many people that are close to me that has drug problems i would rather them get help. i hate seeing them in these situations as to where they have lost everything. jail isnt going to help anyone in this situation because they wont be getting help, just punishment. so i think their poilcy is a good idea

9/20/2016
kentucky
Brianna
middlesboro high school
I think this is a good approach. Most places just arrest them, throw them in jail for a little while, and send them back to the streets, and the cycle continues. The only downside to this is that most if not all of the people who are on drugs do not want help. To rephrase, I believe this is a great idea for the few addicts that actually want to change.

9/20/2016
middlesboro/kentucky
trixie
mrs anderson/middlesboro high school
I believe that the new drug policy will be very helpful to those people and it's fair to them as well. Help is offered to them and they don't have to worry about being fined for something that they find very difficult to control.

9/20/2016
middlesboro/kentucky
Jesse
Anderson/middlesboro high school
i think that people who sell drugs should go to jail,but i dont think that everyone that doe drugs is a bad person. i believe that if u do drugs you should get help not be sent to jail and have to suffer. This will eventually help thousands of people.

9/20/2016
middlesboro ky
mckenzie
mrs anderson middlesboro high school
I do agree with the Gloucester because the people that do drugs can't get help and hide from the police. The Gloucester also provides help for the people addicted to drugs. This idea is a great way to go to help people that want the hep that are on drugs.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro KY
Lauren
Mrs.Anderson
I think we should have specific prisons for drug addicts that don't let people out until they have become rehabilitated from drug addiction.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro/Kentucky
Reece
Anderson/MHS
send them to rehab

9/20/2016
middlesboro/ky
Jack
Anderson/middlesboro
If danger is caused they should be terminated. If not rehab and prison are a option.

9/20/2016
Middlesboro/Kentucky
Dakota
Anderson/middlesboro
Send the people to rehab instead of jail.

5/18/2016
Murrieta/CA
Nathaniel
Mr. Jabro/ Creekside High School
I think that the new drug policy is a good idea. They come in the police station with the equipment that they have been using to to drugs and the police will not arrest, or charge them. They will instead help them with what they need in order to go to rehab. They will give them an 'angel' that will guide them through the process of detox and rehab. Its a good idea and it gives the users the chance to see the error in their ways and start over again. Drug addicts should be sent to rehab centers but if they are repeating offenders then they should be put in prison. I think that this program they are running should be used in every state all around. It could probably drop the drug use rate 10-fold.

5/3/2016
Murietta CA
David
Jaboro Creekside highschool
different drugs should be handled differently. i dont believe in harsh punishment for low level drugs like marijuana or perscriptions, i believe getting people treatment is probably the most optomistic answer, but could the government really afford the hundreds of thousands of people that need help? it may work in a city of 30,000 but LA has over 82,000 people living on the streets every single night. we dont have space in prision or the funds. Its nice to help people, but if you dont work or do anything but roam the streets and do drugs, should they really be entitled to shelter and help for doing absolutely nothing? if i was homeless i would pretend im on drugs for shelter, wouldnt you?

3/20/2016
Stroudsburg PA
Bridget
Mr.Hanna Stroudsburg JHS
I agree with the Gloucester idea because not everyone who is doing drugs is committing dangerous acts that might harm us. Now most people think that drug addicts should to jail and I think no I think they just need to get some help. Yes there are other ways to stop it like don't sell as much drugs or who sells drugs of course goes to jail and just cutting off the drugs will end up helping thousands of people.

3/17/2016
Stroudsburg, PA
Basil
Mr.Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
I agree with Gloucester because people who do drugs cant get help from others and hide from authorities, but this idea provides a chance for all drug users to get help and decrease the chances of an overdose. There are always other ways to get rid of problems but the answer the government looks for is a cheap yet effective way and in this case a safe action; there is no danger present to any officer or addict. I feel that the drug users have a choose if they want the help in jail (in a area where they cant get more) or in the open (where they can get there hands on more because of an addiction).

3/17/2016
Stroudsburg/ PA
Emily
Mr. Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
Gloucester's idea is great! Putting drug addicts in jail takes up way too much space, and it's not like they can help being addicted all the time. Rehab seems like a much better alternative compared to having a no tolerance kind of policy. To combat drug use, I think the best way is to have lots of jobs avaliable and offer good drug education. Students should know what drugs can do to the human body. I'm taking classes on drugs right now, I feel they have helped me understand what they are, and why I shouldn't take them. Having lots of jobs available, or at least having a place where people can stay if they're homeless or poor could help. A lot of drug dealers don't even do drugs, they just sell them because it makes good money.

3/17/2016
stroudsburg/ PA
paige
mr.hanna/ stroudsburg JHS
I agree with the Gloucester idea because not everyone who does drugs can be harmful to others or the environment. These people can finally get the help that they need because not everyone wants to be addicted to drugs.

3/16/2016
Stroudsburg PA
Teshi J
Mr.Hanna/ Stroudsburg JHS
I think Gloucester idea is a great idea because now people who actually want help, can get help. Not everyone who does drugs is harmful and not everyone who does drugs want to have a negative effect towards people. I strongly believe that people on drugs who want help should be sent to a treatment center because it's not the person per-say who causes harm but more so the drug that makes the person this way. And of course there are other ways for towns to fight drug abuse, this is just one.

3/16/2016
Stroudsburg/ PA
Selena
Mr. Hanna/ Stroudsburg JHS
I think that different drugs should be handled on differnet ways. Depends on the severity and health risks of that drug. For some drugs that agents as severe you should be sent to a rehab center ordered by court and for more severe ones you should have to go to jail.

3/16/2016
Stroudsburg, PA
Jahnel D
Mr. Hanna Stroudsburg JHS
Certain drugs should be handled in certain ways. i think that the Gloucester made a good choice. I think it depends on what drug it is some drugs you need to go to jail if you have them but other you have to be treated for it and you need help. There is other way they can cut off any resources to those drugs.

3/16/2016
Stroudsburg PA
Nkosi
Mr.Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
Honestly, I disagree with Gloucester's policy. Heroin and some other drugs are illegal so the addicts should be sent to jail for it. They committed a crime and should be punished for it, not just let off the hook. Most times they don't even want to go to rehab and they just keep doing the drugs.

3/16/2016
Stroudsburg, PA
Elizabeth
Mr. Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
Gloucester's new drug policies entail effective ideas that I believe should be replicated across the country. That being said, I think that instead of making and funding stricter laws and law enforcement, the government should fund harm reduction centers to directly combat the problematic effects of drug abuse. They should offer immediate help and assistance to addicts, just as Gloucester's drug procedures state. Harsher sentences obviously aren't helping the statistics at all, and thus, our strategy needs to change.

3/16/2016
Stroudsburg Pa
Mahogany
Mr.hanna/ Stroudsburg JHS
I think Gloucesters idea is a good idea because instead of punishing them, he's trying to give them treatment and trying to help the get better. I think drug abusers shouldn't be sent to treatment because they can't help if they get addicted to the drug. They can have drug movements and groups and try to persuade other drugs abusers to join.

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg, PA
Gabrielle
Mr. Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
I think that Gloucester's new drug policy is a good idea. I also think that drug addicts should be sent to treatment centers, because they need to stop taking unprescribed drugs. It is effective is several ways to others. If you have children, and you are also taking drugs, your child will see what you do, and you will be who your child looks up to, so now your kid will start doing drugs as well. You will not be a good influence on anyone. I don't know how many other ways there are for cities and towns to stop people from taking drugs, because even if you have strict rules and regulations, there is always someone that can sneak away with drugs without anyone knowing. I wish people would stop taking unprescribed drugs, and I think that people who do drugs, should get help.

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg PA
Miguel
Mr.Hanna Stroudsburg sjhs
I think the Gloucester's is a good idea because it help allot States with the drug addicts that need help. Another way to fight drug abuse in different towns is not all people have insurance or money to pay their pill the ones that truly need it shouldn't have to pay.

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg, pa
Tristan
Mr. Hanna/stroudsburg jhs
Drug addicts should be sent to treatments instead of jail because what if they want help but don't have the motivation they need to get treatment? Towns can fight drug abuse very easily by maybe having meetings for drug addicts to help them through their situation. So in my opinion I belive Gloucester's new drug policy is a great idea.

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg/PA
Hala E
Mr. Hanna/SJHS
I agree with Gloucestor's approach on this growing problem. I think with this idea drug addicts can believe they have a choice and they won't get charges. People need to remember that drug addicts are human too and that everyone makes mistakes. When an addict decides to come to a station it shows that they're trying to get their life together and with the assistance of the police they can have a chance at a normal life. If there's such a large number of deaths due to drugs, maybe we need to think of ways to help addicts instead of arresting anyone we can find.

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg/PA
Niamh
Mr. Hanna/ SJHS
Gloucester's idea is a brilliant one. I think that offering treatment is a wonderful way to diminish the use of drugs, because regardless of punishments, people continue to do bad things, because they think they will never get caught. Offering a solution to a problem is a way to eliminate the drug users, therefore eliminating the illegal demand for dealers. This will help to eradicate themail drug culture in our society over time.

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg JHS
darrick
Mr. Hanna
I think that Gloucester's new drug policy is a good idea and it should help allot with the states that are suffering with drugs being used and overdosed. Another way to fight drug abuse in different towns is not all people have insurance or money to pay their pill the ones that truly need it shouldn't have to pay.

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg,PA
Justin C.
Mr.Hanna/Stroudburg JHS
I think think it is a good idea. Many people who are drug addicts don't get the help they need and end up passing away. So I think people should take action more by learning more about drugs and how harmful they really are to your body

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg/PA
Jon
Mr.Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
Yes, this policy is a fantastic idea. Drug addicts no longer have control over their lives anymore, and therefore should not be prosecuted, especially if they went to a police station to ask for assistance. Other ways towns and cities could fight drug abuse is by nonviolent ways. For example sending a truck filled with heavily armed men is not a good way to stop drug abuse. Instead a better way would be to send medical assistance.

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg, PA
Umu
Mr.Hanna/ Stroudsburg JHS
I think that Gloucester's new drug policy is a great idea for the people. They should be sent to treatment centers because they need help. Other ways towns and cities can stop drug abuse is to stop taking it.

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg, PA
Dallas
Mr. Hannah/Stroudsburg JHS
Yes the Gloucesters new drug policy is a good idea because it helps a lot of drug addicts that need the help. The drug addicts should be sent to a treatment that way they are withdrawaling or getting sick or harmful because they dont have the drugs they need. Another way to fight drug abuse in different towns is not all people have insurance or money to pay their pill the ones that truly need it shouldn't have to pay. They are drug addicts and if it continues the deaths are going to continue as well.

3/15/2016
Stroudsburg, PA
Dallas
Mr. Hannah/Stroudsburg JHS
Yes the Gloucesters new drug policy is a good idea because it helps a lot of drug addicts that need the help. The drug addicts should be sent to a treatment that way they are withdrawaling or getting sick or harmful because they dont have the drugs they need. Another way to fight drug abuse in different towns is not all people have insurance or money to pay their pill the ones that truly need it shouldn't have to pay. They are drug addicts and if it continues the deaths are going to continue as well.

3/14/2016
Stroudsburg, PA
Ryan Lowe
Me.Hanna/Stoudsburg JHS
I think there are many ways that a town can control there communities drug problem. For one, there should me education about drugs and there harm if does to people for kids at a young age. Next, if the town sees a lot of overdoses a on pills and such, doctors in the area should cut down on supplying patients who don't have serious problems.

3/14/2016
Stroudsburg, P. A.
Sara
Mr. Hanna/ Stroudsburg JHS
Yes, the way that Gloucester's police chief handles it is away they most certainly should. I think that addicts should go and get help. So yes, let them go to a treatment facility and not directly to prison. If towns try to stop drug abuse people might rebel. I think that being able to see an officer and get help without being punished is a way that they should all handle it.

3/3/2016
Murrieta
Marco
Mr Jabro Creekside highschool
Certain drugs should be charged differently like Marijuana i feel in my opinion isn't anything like Heroin its probably the least harmful someone shouldn't get arrested for having marijuana on them or caught smoking it it doesnt hurt anyone every drug can be used in a good helpful way if its used right for medical reasons i believe all of them had a good purpose but if someone is over dosing on drugs yes i think they should be helped

3/2/2016
Rudyard,MT
Samantha
Mrs.Campbell/Northstar
Is Gloucester's new drug policy a good idea? Should drug addicts be sent to treatment centers or put in jail? Gloucester's new drug policy is a good idea, since they are actually attacking the problem without brunt force, but with kindness. Rather than sending the drug addicts to jail, the act of giving help to the ones that want to reform would decrease the sale of drugs. Also, by not jailing drug addicts, we would be saving tax money and decrease the amount spent on necessary items for jail since there would be a decrease in members. Also, not all drug abusers are bad, some are misguided people that need help getting clean, and by providing a chance for them to become clean, they can become valued members of society.

2/11/2016
Ca
Kevin Rodriguez
Jabro/Creekside
How should towns handle their drug crisis? Towns could handle their drug crisis by letting people take drugs at their own risk. They could also make some police officers take off their uniform and look like street people. Police could also pretend to be drug dealers and buy the drugs then just keep them and possibly stop some drug dealing. That might be better than having police officers wear their uniforms cause then they might just get shot or not be able to stop any drugs.

1/28/2016
murrieta/California
Khedar Chuck Jones
Jabro/Creekside
Certain drugs should be handled a certain way. For instance if someone gets caught with marijuana they should not be arrested for it and they should not get a drug charge but instead should have their marijuana taken away from them. However if they have more serious drugs such as meth, Coke, crack, and so on they should be instantly arrested and either put in jail or sent to treatment for help.

1/11/2016
Murrieta/California
Maria M.
Jabro/ Creekside
I believe Gloucester's new policy is a great idea. To me it shows that not all people in the world are bad. Most people wouldn't want to help those using drugs because they believe that they are responsible for their own actions. that is very true but however some people might just need a little push to becoming the person they once were before the drugs. Gloucester's drug policy of sending addicts to treatment instead of jail is smart because in some ways it helps with the overpopulated jails/prisons around the country and also be helping a lot of people stop using drugs. Gloucester is an angel himself for giving people hope that some humans still have humanity.

12/11/2015
Diamond Bar, CA
AllyP4
Wong/Lorbeer
Gloucester's new drug policy is a wonderful idea because it seems to be very effective to the people around the town who are dealing with drug problems and overdoses. The idea of having an "angel" is a really good idea because it could help keep them on the drug-free path. Also, drugs are harming their bodies, so they should be allowed treatment. Some people who are extreme drug attics should have to go to some addiction home to settle their addictions.

12/10/2015
Diamond Bar/CA
KarenP1
Wong/Lorbeer
Gloucester's drug policy seems like a very creative and inspirational way to help people with drug problems start to change their ways and live a better, safer life. Instead of coming at the people in areas with small populations as if the law enforcements are the enemies, they resort to saving people from their troubles by putting their safety and needs as the priority. They ensure that the people with addictions get the help they need which helps to reduce the amount of deaths from overdoses on drugs. I believe that drug addicts should indeed be sent into treatment and rehab instead of a place like jail, because when you think about, when being put into treatment, the people come out better and it helps them to open their eyes and realize that they have a problem whereas in jail the addicts may see it as a form of punishment and will just be more tempted to resort to their old ways without getting their required help. If people were to be able to own up to their wrong doings then they wouldn't have to deal with as much consequences they would have had to deal without doing the whole confession thing. For example, if druggies did not choose the lifestyle they had, a stupid decision chose it for them, then they could receive help that the police facilities were offering to them with included "angels" to help guide them throughout the way. I strongly believe however that the drug dealers do need a punishment because in their desperate need for money they do need seem to grasp the reality that it is their products that kill many victims throughout the years. In order to get people to think about the consequences of drugs I think that towns and cities should hold public events where addicts and recoverees would be able to discuss their experiences and get motivated by one another.

12/10/2015
Diamond Bar, CA
EmilyP.4
Wong/Lorbeer
I believe that this drug program is a fantastic idea that will help people and not punish people for their mistakes by putting them in jail with not much help. The people who help also known as angels is a great idea because sometimes people need help right away and with this program they can. With this program they can stop putting victims in jail and instead put the people who give the drugs in jail. Over all I think Gloucester's program is a great idea that can help many people. They will want help now because they won't be punished. All towns should do something like this.

12/10/2015
Pomona
ErikP4
Wong/Lorbeer
Gloucester`s policy for drugs is effective to the people who are dealing with drugs to get help. Having an "angel" that helps them out with there addiction is a really good idea to try to stop them from taking drugs. But there is one thing I would improve, to have a punishment. People won just stop with just help, they need a very important reason or fear to stop them from taking drugs. To sum it all up this policy might just be the end to drug addiction, or come close to.

12/10/2015
Pomona
ErikP4
Wong/Lorbeer
Gloucester`s policy for drugs is effective to the people who are dealing with drugs to get help. Having an "angel" that helps them out with there addiction is a really good idea to try to stop them from taking drugs. But there is one thing I would improve, to have a punishment. People won just stop with just help, they need a very important reason or fear to stop them from taking drugs. To sum it all up this policy might just be the end to drug addiction, or come close to.

12/10/2015
Diamond Bar/CA
Jordyn P1
Wong/Lorbeer
I like the idea of putting drug abusers in rehab or a program instead of putting them in jail. I think it is good for people to know that it isn't the end of the world and they can get help. I also think People shouldn't have a criminal record for an accident getting addicted to drugs is not worth going to jail for only selling the drugs.

12/10/2015
Diamond Bar/CA
JosephP5
Wong/Lorbeer
I think the towns should handle drugs like a bank handles money. Drugs could be, and are used illegally in most places, like in smuggles from other countries and in homemade drugs farms. The town should just leave the drugs in the pharmacy and leave their town/city to go get only weeks supply of prescribed drugs and not nonprescribed or unneeded drugs to people who seem like they would use it for pleasure and not for curing themselves or a loved one at home. Drug addicts should be monitored for this reason. More and more people are getting addicted because of a stupid little thing called peer pressure and stupidity impulses. Even children are using drugs in some areas of the world, probably because they live with a drug addict/stoner and could easily get a hold of them and share them with their friends.

12/10/2015
Pomona CA
marissaP4
wong/lorbeer
The Gloucester drug's policy is such a good program that help drug addicts stop their addiction to drugs. This program will help reduce the number of drug addicts in the world and reduce the deaths that happen every minute from drugs. I believe that drug addicts should get so treatment well depends on how much of a drug addict they are.

12/9/2015
Pomona/California
Xuan Mai P4
Wong/Lorbeer
Gloucester drug's policy is such a great and helpful program because it helps the drug addicts stop with the addiction which can lead them to a much better life and it helps reduce the number of death from overdoses of drugs. Drug addicts should be sent into treatment rather than be sent into jail because everyone makes mistakes and deserves forgiveness and help but most importantly a second chance. The program will be very helpful because I feel that most drug addicts don't confess because they don't want to be put into prison and deal with the punishments that follows but this program rather then a negative punishment, they help the person live a drug free life. Since this program actually helps the drug addicts rather than just throwing them into jail, I believe more people would confess and get help because many times the drug users didn't start off wanting to get into the drug lifestyle but just giving one shot and tasting the drug because of peer pressure could ruin their whole life and cause them to be addicted to it. If a drug addict is caught and sent into jail and then gets out after a few years, they will not be able to get a job and live like a normal life which can cause them to go back into the drug world. However if a drug addict gets help and guided into treatment and recovery by an "angel", they will change to become a drug free person and get a decent job and live their life to their fullest without worrying about drugs taking over their lives. If anyone deserves to be punish, I believe it should be the drug dealers because they are the ones that are putting good people into a drug addict position and ruining their lives by agreeing to sell them harmful drugs. Some ways to help fight drug abuse is to set up shows and performance that teaches the community about the consequences of drugs and and also how to not agree on peer pressure. Another way is to have a counseling hotline or place where drug users can go and get help.

12/8/2015
Diamond Bar/CA
NicoleP5
Wong/Lorbeer
Gloucester's new drug policy is a good idea because the program have "angels" who will guide and assist those drug addicts to a better lifestyle. Drug addicts should be sent to treatment centers and not be put in jail because the drugs causes them to be more addicted and want more of it. It's not their fault that the drugs causes an addiction for them. They made bad choices by choosing to take it in the first place, but as one of the officers states, "they're all human beings." Everyone makes bad choices in life, but the more drugs that are taken, the more the person would want it and that's what causes them to be addicts. If anything, we should find and arrest the drug dealers so there isn't as many dealers to sell drugs anymore. Another way to fight drug abuse is by educating the public by informing them of the negative side affects and how it causes crimes due from taking the drugs.

12/4/2015
Watertown MA
Michaela
Rimas/Watertown high
The consequences for being in the possession of drugs should be much more harsh. Maybe then people won't be in the possession with them as much

11/25/2015
Pomona/California
Monica/ 5th
Wong/Lorbeer
Gloucester's new drug policy seems to be very effective to the people who are dealing with overdoes. It seems to me that having an 'angel' with them to get them on the right track is a smart idea. On the other hand, the addicts did harm themselves before they received any kind of help. Furthermore, the addicts should be able to get treatment but they should also be sentenced for at least a year in prison because even if some people say they are good, they can still go back to their drug-usage again. If there are smaller towns with this issue, they should have people show proper identification before buying any drugs.

11/10/2015
Murrieta/California
Khedar Chuck Jones
Mr. Jabro/ Creekside High School
Well either one will matter because if you put some drug addicts in treatment maybe 50% will be drug free but the other 50% will go back to doing the drugs there the ones going to jail. Yes the towns can only give drugs out only if the person has a license to buy that drug.

11/5/2015
CA
Amber
Jabro/creekside
I personally 100% agree with what Gloucester stated.I believe that we should stop treating all drug addicts as these terrible monsters who are completely consenting to everything they're doing. No they're not, at first yes it's consent and they agree to try the drug once or twice maybe, but then it becomes a full out addiction and depending on the drug some people physically can not stop. So we need to stop pinning these people, yes. PEOPLE as these terrible monsters who are 5,000% aware of what they are doing. In Europe they are much more understanding and feel that they rather the addicts have clean needles and clean products instead of becoming a mess and a problem in society. Just like Gloucester is trying to do. I 100% agree what he is saying and even would add more to it and do it the way Europe does it. Because, how do you think "criminals" feel if they know there is actual help, and if a cop stopped him/her it wouldn't be this whole "Get away from the cops and endanger people's lives for the sake of not going to prison." It would be more of a "it's okay, these are good people and they know you're struggling.": So in that sense that is my view on this discussion.

11/2/2015
Murrieta/California
Daniel
Jabro/ Creekside
Certain drugs should be handled a certain way. For instance if someone gets caught with marijuana they should not be arrested for it and they should not get a drug paraphernalia charge but instead should have their marijuana confiscated. However if they have more serious drugs such as meth, Coke, crack, and so on they should be instantly arrested and either put in jail or sent to treatment for help.

11/1/2015
Diamond Bar, California
LucasP4
Wong/Lorbeer
How should towns handle their drug crisis? Towns could handle their drug crisis by letting people take drugs at their own risk. They could also make some police officers take off their uniform and look like street people. Police could also pretend to be drug dealers and buy the drugs then just keep them and possibly stop some drug dealing. That might be better than having police officers wear their uniforms cause then they might just get shot or not be able to stop any drugs.

10/19/2015
Murrieta,CA
Casey
Mr.Jabro
I do agree with Police Chief Gloucester, but depending on the drug should they allow you to go through treatment. Going to prison for any drug related issue isnt going to make that prisoner stop that drug. More likely, that prisoner who got arrested for herion is probably going to get released and go straight back to that drug. Trying to give them a chance to chnage is a good idea. but if that individual goes back to it, they should be sent to prison immidietly.

10/15/2015
Wildomar, Ca
Erik
Jabro/Creekside
Certain drugs should be handled a certain way. For instance if someone gets caught with marijuana they should not be arrested for it and they should not get a drug paraphernalia charge but instead should have their marijuana confiscated. However if they have more serious drugs such as meth, Coke, crack, and so on they should be instantly arrested or sent to treatment for help.

10/13/2015
Murrieta/CA
Joshua
Mr. Jabro/ Creekside high school
I believe Gloucester's police chief Leonard Campanello's new drug policy is a good idea because it gives drug addicts another chance to fight their durg addiciton before they are sent to prison. They should be taken to a treatment center to seek help, sending them to jail will only worsen their's and our situation. Another way cities and towns can fight drug abuse is by increasing the number of police and bringing in undercover cops to find the source of the drug dealing.

10/13/2015
Murrieta,CA
Davin
Mr.Jabro/Creekside
I highly respect Campanello's alternative to the war on drugs. Instead of making a war on drugs, we need to help these addicts fight their addiction. Putting a addict in jail isnt going to help them defeat their addiction, i beilieve it will only make them more desperate to get out and start using drugs again.

10/12/2015
murrieta ca
Robert
Creekside/ Jabro
I believe that help is needed more than jail. I believe that this is a sickness, and addictive personalities are a code within ones D.N.A. Although it is the users choice to want t use the drug i personally think some people have an unfair advantage in becoming addicts and i think it is better to help an individual if the user is not a repeat offender of this program. I believe 3 strikes are allowed to be used in this, each one harder to complete and longer to put through. I think the option for the first time should be up to the individual to what state they want to go in, the next is is up to the individual to pick their classes that they wan to do, and each class should be 6 months long, the last time, they check in it's up to the police/ government and they decide where you go, and what classes you take and how long you are there for

10/9/2015
Murrieta, California
Micah W
Jabro - Creekside Highschool
Gloucester's new drug policy is a very promising step in the right direction, ever since the 70's non violent drug offenders have been receiving obscene amounts of jail time, not to mention the addicts that are imprisoned for having an addiction. It's counter intuitive to send a drug addict to prison where substances are far more accessible to them. The issue of prescription pill abuse and heroin addiction should've always been treated the same way as alcoholism, with rehabilitation rather than criminalization.

10/9/2015
Murrieta, Ca
Jakob
Mr. Jabro / Creekside High
The ways towns should handle their drug crisis and stop the overdosing is by anytime they are caught with any narcotic, drug, or drug parifenila make it a felony and arrest them and send the to jail and make them do a mandatory rehab.

10/6/2015
Murrieta, CA
Alize
Jabro - Creekside
I think the state as a whole should make the availability to crooked doctors nearly impossible. A majority of prescription pill addicts have a prescription to the drug of their choice given by doctors who are rarely checked upon. If the state, as a whole, were to go out of their way to check the prescriptions, prescriber and reciever to accuratley determine the authenticity of it all. Basically, I think they need to do more to stop the source, then the user himself.

10/4/2015
murrieta
cynthia pinegar
creekside
drug crisis can be handled in certain ways. Drug crisis handeled in towns can be hnadeld by people getting help and knowing it will be beneficial to your self and family. aslo police should be able to check up on u if u have been to a treatment center.

10/4/2015
murrieta ca
cynthia pinegar
mr.jabro
towns should handle their drug crisis they should get help from others or drug counseling. Getting help and realizing you need help would be beneficial to your life and others

10/2/2015
Sidney Montana
Sierra
Mr. Faulhaber
Knowing many very close people to me that has drug problems I would rather them get help. I hate seeing them in these situations as to where they're lost because of the influences they're situated in. I have seen families torn apart from problems such as these. I believe it would be very helpful to have treatment options available that easily and quickly for people who fall under these catagories. Some people make appointments for things such as drug court or treatments and they don't follow through but rather get into even more problems with drugs. I think it is even more beneficial for them to get help for going in rather than jail, which could tear families up even more. I think it's an idea that should be distributed in every state.

10/2/2015
Sidney Montana
Micala Morehouse
Mr. Faulhaber Sidney High School
I think that drug addicts should get help instead of sent to jail or confinement. towns can try to stop the crime by finding the main ways that the drugs get into their towns. they could hire more police.

10/2/2015
Sidney Mt
lucas
Mr. Faulhaber
Certain drugs should be handled a certain way. For instance if someone gets caught with marijuana they should not be arrested for it and they should not get a drug paraphernalia charge but instead should have their marijuana confiscated. However if they have more serious drugs such as meth, Coke, crack, and so on they should be instantly arrested and either put in jail or sent to treatment for help.

9/30/2015
Murrieta CA
McKenzie Milligan
Jabro, Creekside High School
Drug addicts should be sent to treatments instead of jail because what if they want help but don't have the motivation they need to get treatment? Towns can fight drug abuse very easily by maybe having meetings for drug addicts to help them through their situation. So in my opinion I belive Gloucester's new drug policy is a great idea.

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