Help the Opioid crisis in MA by reopening Long Island for services
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On October 8, 2014, the bridge leading to Boston Harbor's Long Island was deemed unsafe. That evening, I had 2 hours to evacuate 60 of my patients suffering from substance use disorder, seeking treatment and in a stable, safe environment. That evening was the start of a public health crisis. Over 700 patients were on that island that evening in various levels of care such as detox, stabilization and half way houses. There was also a reentry program for men coming out of prison and homeless shelter that provided amazing services to this population. With one phone call that evening, all of those services were lost. All of those patients were rushed away from the only place they felt safe and with people that cared about them. They had to leave their belongings, all they owned, and be uprooted in early sobriety to fend for themselves in overcrowded programs that we received help from, temporarily. Over 3 years later, we are in a furthering state of public health crisis. The MA State Police have statistics that an average of 6 people a day die from Opioid related overdoses. We don't have the resources we need because the demand is so high. The unsafe bridge was blown up and people forgot about this population. Recently, at the Mayor of Bostons inaugural address, Mayor Walsh announced he would rebuild the bridge and resume substance use disorder treatment services. The state of MA with the city of Boston would finally see help and hope with this crisis. Unfortunately, the Mayor of Quincy has stated he will not rebuild the bridge to get to the island. The reasons he gave were financial and neighbooods being inconvenienced. As you may be able to sense, there's quite a bit of politics involved with this bridge. I am here to make it transparent and emphasize the dire need to rebuild that bridge and resume services for a forgotten population. I care about this population and I am also part of this population. I was a nurse at a detox on Long Island shortly after I received treatment for my own substance use disorder. What people don't see is the success stories with treating this disorder. I was treated and am a nurse, mother and productive, healthy member of society. I want everyone to have that chance. By limiting the availability to be of service to a dying generation, we are part of the problem. I ask that you be part of the solution and help me, help this Opioid crisis by getting this bridge back up where it belongs. Everyone deserves a chance at Recovery. No politician, or human being for that matter, should ever dictate whether a person lives or dies. I want to see this bridge on Boston Harbor some day soon. Please help them.
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