It’s no time to pass the buck.
When it comes to the rising opioid abuse issue coursing through Long Island’s veins, we want to make sure we continue the open dialogue.
As you finish reading this edition, we hope you reflect on how this growing problem affects you, your family, your friends and everyone else around you — we can’t hide from this.
We need to take a more head-on approach to this medical issue, and accept that it is a medical problem, and not as some say a moral failing.
Parents shouldn’t let the stigma attached to drug or substance abuse keep them from talking about it. If we are to learn and grow and recover, we need to be talking. If we hide from the issue, the results will most certainly be fatal.
This is a problem that requires a collaborative effort, including prevention through education and early identification of at-risk people, enforcement with sharper penalties to dealers and prescription writers and improved rehabilitation resources and strategies. And as this issue should reflect, many groups on the North Shore are dedicated to working together to fight this crisis.
A cooperative combination of all of these things can help get Long Island headed in the right direction. Listed below are several resources if you or a loved one is struggling with substance or drug abuse.
• Suffolk County Substance Abuse Hotline: 631-979-1700
• Hope House Ministries: 631-978-0188
• Response of Suffolk County 24-hour hotline: 631-751-7500
• Prevention Resource Center: 631-650-0135
• Phoenix House’s Edward D. Miller substance abuse treatment center: 844-296-9046
• Samaritan Village’s Suffolk Outpatient Treatment Program: 631-351-7112
• St. Charles Hospital rehab program: 631-474-6233
• New York State HOPEline: 1-877-8-HOPENY
• Suffolk County Division of Community Mental Hygiene Services: 631-853-8500
Visit http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/substanceabuse for a downloadable prevention, treatment and recovery services directory, which gives a list of service agencies and treatment centers on Long Island.