As you probably know from my previous blog post. Franklin County Massachusetts is in the grips of a Heroin addiction. An addiction so strong that it is killing our young people, or condemning them to a life with a monkey on their backs. Getting help for this addiction has been also hampered by our geographic location. Until now the addict had to travel to Springfield, South Boston or Framingham. Therefore there are no services available for detox in Franklin or Hampshire Counties. There are also a severely limited number of beds in those facilities, with a growing number of addicts fighting for space.
The State of Massachusetts and the City of Greenfield have chosen to put a detox/rehab center in the former Lunt Silversmith Building on Federal Street. This Center would kill the proverbial 2 birds with 1 stone. Bring a much needed detox/rehab facility to the area and make use of a building that has been vacant for many years.
This has caused the typical “Not in My Backyard” debate. That by putting this detox/rehab center in Greenfield it will cause the following:
1. More Heroin Addiction
2. More Crime
3. That Building could be used for something else.
4. We don’t want a building full of junkies in the middle of town, put it somewhere else.
Answers and rebuttals to those complaints:
1. A heroin detox/rehab center does not cause more addiction, any more than an alcohol detox/rehab center causes more alcoholism.
THAT ARGUMENT IS INVALID
2. A detox/rehab center will not invite crime to Federal Street in Greenfield. The patients will not be wandering the neighborhood at night. It will be in effect a hospital.
THIS ARGUMENT IS INVALID
3. This building has been vacant for many years and off the tax rolls. Leaving it any longer will allow it to fall to further disrepair and it will enter the realm of the Greenfield Forgotten Buildings.
THIS ARGUMENT IS INVALID
4. It all boils down to this, well the problem lies within the heart of Greenfield. So therefore that is where its solution should be.
THIS ARGUMENT IS JUST AN OPINION.
This was best said by my 18yr old last night. “We are the last large town on the Heroin Highway before the runners reach Vermont, we have a huge problem and it is only gonna get worse if we don’t address it. Greenfield, and the surrounding towns are being lost and overrun by heroin, we need to fix this, before there is nothing left to fix” Therefore put the Center in the Lunt Building, use that building for good, put it in My Backyard, because my yard is the one with the weeds that need to be cleaned up.