Thank you to all who came out in support of The New Face of Addiction at the Morristown Jewish Center Beit Yisrael last night. The crowd was full of eager parents, families, adolescents, and concerned community members in search of information.
The speakers held the audience captive.
We heard from Paul Lavella, Program Director at Treatment Dynamics who discussed the current trends we are seeing among our adolescents, the continued growing problem of prescription opioid abuse and how it can easily develop into heroin addiction.
Next up was Brad Seabury, Supervising Assistant Prosecutor of the Special Operations Division who discussed the opioid problem and how it is being handled my law enforcement. He discussed their eagerness to take down the large heroin mills, versus the individual user, and alternatives to jail such as drug court – amongst many other things.
Our panel took the stage next which included: Morris County Prosecutor Frederic M. Knapp, Randy Thompson founder of Help Not Handcuffs – an organization which focuses on treatment rather than arrest, Rabbi Eisenberg, who is not only a Rabbi but also a drug and alcohol counselor who shared insightful information on addiction as a disease and not a moral deficiency, Dr. Ricki Lynn Gottlieb MD who has a practice in Randolph, NJ and shared about starting the dialogue of addiction among adolescents and their families. Last but not least was Ricki’s son, Austin, who shared his personal story of recovery, and had the audience near tears.
Each panel member was prompted with questions and concepts and elaborated on different areas of addiction such as: legal, treatment, investment in treatment versus arrest, personal, medical, and spiritual. Addiction is a disease which does not discriminate.