Support for The Divided Sky Foundation’s substance abuse treatment center in Ludlow, Vt

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To the Developmental Review Board Ludlow, Vt.

In support of the substance use disorder treatment center.  Act 250 review to change use of the property formerly known as the weight loss control center. 

My name is Jessica Frasca. I moved to Ludlow when I was 17. I lived, worked and voted in the town of Ludlow for over 27 years until I recently purchased land and a business in Chester. I may vote in Chester, but I know Ludlow and the surrounding area is in desperate need of this center. 

There are only four inpatient recovery centers located in the state of Vermont and they are extremely difficult to get into. There is too much need in our state. Vermont is ranked 11th for overdose deaths in this country. We lost 134 Vermonters to overdose in 2020. My 24 year old daughter was one of them. She was born and raised here, 5th generation Vermonter, in Ludlow where she was introduced to heroin, right here in this town. 

I have read the petition against the approval of this center. It seems they are concerned about crime, and I am here to tell you crime and drug use is already rampant in our community. We are losing our children, I know too many local families devastated by our substance abuse problem and they are from all walks of life, no family is immune to this.

This program will be a not for profit company that will be able to offer treatment to all income levels. It is for all forms of addiction and will not only help with sobriety but will offer job training and help them reintegrate back into the workforce and the community, which helps them maintain sobriety. The center they are proposing will be heavily vetting its patients, it’s not just walk in. Patients in recovery centers are under strict supervision and not allowed to roam around town or even up the street, drug dealers do not frequent recovery centers to sell drugs. They are already selling on the street, from homes in our towns right this very minute. 

The amount of traffic to the center would be no more than any other business that purchased the property. I also think the look of the building and grounds may even improve for their drive by to their condos once the landscaping is redone and taken care of. 

Although the author of the opposing petition thinks Jackson Gore and Vail are our biggest assets I disagree. I think our local community, our generations of Vermonters and our children should be our biggest assets. Yes they are the biggest draw of tourists and are a huge asset to the Okemo valley. But we must be more than just a ski mountain. We need to care of our people. This would bring 30 full time, year round jobs to Ludlow. Any business that brings year round professional jobs to the area should be welcomed into the community.

I believe this is a gift from God, Trey Anastasio, and the The Divided Sky Foundation, and we need to accept this gift, and be thankful ludlow was chosen. 
 Please share this with your neighbors and local businesses and please leave your name and town you are registered to vote. Thank you!!