This summer marked three years since the CLEAR Program launched in Sussex County. CLEAR, which stands for Community Law Enforcement Addiction Recovery, was the first police-assisted addiction recovery initiative in New Jersey and remains the only county-wide program in our state to utilize law enforcement agencies as a pathway to recovery.
Hundreds of individuals and families have been positively impacted by the support and assistance offered by CLEAR, building a healthier community for us all.
On Tuesday, Sept. 10, Mohawk House in Sparta, hosted a luncheon to celebrate the successes and progress the CLEAR Program has made in the last year. An Annual Report, which can be read online at http://clearprogram.org/annual-report was presented, sharing some hopeful statistics. While fatal and non-fatal drug overdoses have risen dramatically in recent years across the nation and our state, overdose deaths and administrations of naloxone by law enforcement and EMS decreased from 2017 to 2018.
From July 1, 2018 to June 30, 2019, 21 people with Substance Use Disorder sought help through the CLEAR Program by walking into a participating police department or calling the CLEAR helpline. Each person was linked to treatment and paired with Recovery Coaches for ongoing support.
Additionally, other initiatives utilizing CLEAR Recovery Coaches like Operation Helping Hand and the Opioid Overdose Recovery Program provided hundreds of people with recovery support services and connection to treatment in the past year.
The highlight of this third anniversary event was the wonderful and hopeful story shared by a father who spoke about his experience as a family member getting help for his son last September through CLEAR. Roy’s son struggled on and off with substance use for years following a traumatic event and the family encountered many barriers when seeking help. CLEAR removed those barriers, providing assistance, overcoming obstacles that so many people face today when seeking help for a substance use disorder. Roy’s son has successfully maintained recovery ever since walking through the doors of the Newton Police Department last year.
More information can be found at clearprogram.org or by calling CLEAR at 844-722-5327.