MONTAGUE, Mass. (WWLP) – More Americans than ever have become heroin addicts and it’s no different here in Western Massachusetts. 22News shows us what’s being done to combat heroin addiction in Franklin County.
Heroin use became so serious in the town of Montague, Police chief “Chip Dodge” has enlisted the public’s support including picking up needles that addicts have used.
Marissa Hebble heads up Franklin County’s Opioid Task Force, “You know the population we’re really concerned about is 18 to 25. We’re seeing an increase in our 18 to 25 year olds.”
Many of these drug users have become another statistic. The department of public health confirmed 14 people from Franklin County overdosed on heroin and died in 2014. Men and women who use opioid painkillers are forty times more likely to use heroin.
Edward Ryan of Turners falls told 22News, he battled substance abuse. It’s his opinion that many young people are shifting their addiction from alcohol to heroin, which is less expensive, “Some would say drug abuse is less toxic to your system substance abusers will want to stay high for emotional for many other reasons.”
In Massachusetts, 1008 people died from an opioid overdose last year alone.