New Jersey is not providing enough help and treatment options for substance abuse. With the epidemic abuse of heroin, opiates and prescription painkillers, the state is lacking the necessary funds in order to provide services to those in need. The Jersey Shore is an area that has bit hit very hard, and the lack of facilities to help with this problem is a growing concern. The lack of halfway homes, long-term programs and detox facilities has many people in the area scrambling to make changes.
In 2011, the last time data was taken, New Jersey had 361 substance abuse treatment centers, which is 20 more than in 2007. Of the 361 treatment facilities, 210 are private nonprofits, 127 are private for-profits and 25 were run by the government. A report from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration says there are 6,086 total beds in all facilities in the state of New Jersey. When an addict is in need of long-term care, they usually look for help from other states.
The amount of beds in New Jersey does not come close to the amount needed to help even a quarter of the individuals seeking help it in the state. An estimated figure of 72,000 people seek help and treatment in NJ but less than 10% of those people will find the help they are looking for in the state. The Jersey Shore is facing even greater troubles. Ocean County only provides one detox center and Monmouth County a whopping two facilities.
Heroin and prescription painkillers led New Jersey's substance abuse admissions in 2012 with 33,507 admissions. Just imagine the amount of people who are going untreated or being released from treatment centers. These addicts are pushed back out onto the streets to fend for themselves and most fall right back into their routine of addiction.
It's no surprise that a rise in drug addiction correlates to the increase in local crimes. Many people do not have sympathy for addicts and often claim "They did it to themselves, why should we help them get better"? Helping these individuals helps everyone. Less crime, less burglarizes, less car accidents and more working members of society. These addicts can be your friends, family, and neighbors.
New Jersey needs to face this epidemic head first, and get the proper treatments available to help end the abuse. Addiction is growing out of control, and people are dying at an increasing rate from overdoses. Many addicts want help, but don't even know where to begin in the process. When the options are limited, what are addicts to do?