BOSTON (WWLP) – People of all backgrounds and economic levels are struggling with substance abuse, addiction to alcohol, and drugs – most recently opiates.
More than 3000 Massachusetts resident died from opioid-related overdoses last year. The State Department of Public Health is awarding nearly $3 million in grants to expand substance abuse prevention programs.
It’s a statewide initiative that will bring much needed services to historically underserved areas, such as the Berkshires.
Boston will receive $400,000, while Northern Berkshire County, Franklin County and the City of Springfield will receive $100,000 each. They will use that money to work with towns, local colleges, and universities to address underage drinking and drug use.
House Substance Abuse Committee member State Representative Liz Malia said, “Peer to peer counseling is something that works really well, but we have to build that whole infrastructure up so we can have those programs, get them into the schools, get them into the community centers.”
The Baker administration believes these grants will offer communities more tools to educate and respond to substance abuse.