The Gloucester County Prosecutor’s Office, in cooperation with the county’s two hospitals and municipal police departments, will announce Tuesday (11/1) the start of a substance abuse recovery coaching program in which police officers will put addicted individuals in touch with trained “coaches” who can encourage and guide them into treatment.
In this program, police who administer the heroin overdose antidote Narcan are to offer the individual, once stabilized at a hospital, the opportunity to meet with a recovery coach before being discharged. Officers may also offer the services of a recovery coach to anyone they believe would benefit, even in a non-Narcan encounter.
Recovery coach training is being provided by City of Angels NJ Inc., founded in 2009 to guide people with addictions into treatment and support their recovery.
The GCPO program is consistent with state legislation enacted this year to expand addiction treatment opportunities and improve relationships between law enforcement and addiction sufferers. The law allows police officers to become a “point of access” for help and recovery.