CAMDEN, NJ (CBS) — The U.S. Justice Department is handing out almost $59 million to help fight the opioid epidemic. More than 1 million dollars is targeted to three programs in New Jersey.
$700,000 is enroute to Trenton for a pair of statewide programs to share data and to leverage funding from the private sector. Closer to home, $400,000 is earmarked to Camden County to help a specific group of addicts get clean
“The funds will go mainly towards providing treatment and support for individuals with a history of opioid misuse who are currently imprisoned,” Freeholder Director Lou Cappelli told KYW Newsradio.
The idea? To help them stay drug free when they hit the street. Some of that money will also go to first time drug offenders, as a way for them to get treatment instead of going to jail.
Cappelli suggests there was fierce competition for a cut of that grant.
“About three years ago we formed our Opioid Addiction Task Force,” he added, “and the Board of Freeholders have made it a priority to start dealing with this epidemic.”
Cappelli thinks that long term commitment to an issue now getting national attention set it apart from the rest.