Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina and Mount Holly Township Police Chief Richard Spitler announced today that the drug treatment program that allows people to walk off the street and into a police station to seek help for addiction is now available in Mount Holly.
Beginning today, the Straight…to Treatment program will operate every Tuesday at the Mount Holly police station on Washington Street from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., in conjunction with Solstice Counseling & Wellness Center.
Mount Holly becomes the fourth municipality to offer the program.
“With the addition of the Mount Holly location, we have once again increased the program’s coverage area and will be able to more effectively provide services to those who are seeking to overcome substance use disorder and turn around their lives,” Prosecutor Coffina said. “I am grateful to Chief Spitler and Solstice Counseling for their partnership and determination to help make treatment more available in this part of the County.”
Chief Spitler said his department has been following the program in the other jurisdictions and was encouraged by the results that were achieved.
“We believe it would be beneficial to the people in this area who are suffering from addiction,” Chief Spitler said. “We want the public to know that we are not just here to enforce the law but also to help those in need of this potentially life-saving service.”
Since January 2019, Mount Holly has had nearly 50 reported overdoses, five of which were fatal. Narcan was deployed during the non-fatal incidents.
Evesham opened the initial Straight…to Treatment location in March 2018. It expanded into Pemberton Township six months later, and the City of Burlington began providing the service in April 2019.
Since its inception, more than 325 people have been provided assistance through the program.
“We are gratified to have been able to provide a lifeline to so many people, but the truly important number is ‘one;’ each person we can help is a blessing,” Prosecutor Coffina said. “We believe that even more people may have come forward if not for the pandemic. I want to emphasize that due to the commitment of the participating police departments and our partner providers, all Straight…to Treatment locations have remained open throughout this public health crisis. Even if the municipal building is closed, if someone comes into a police station during the program hours they will be helped.”
Insurance is not necessary to receive help through Straight…to Treatment, and neither is residency in Burlington County. The program focuses on making sure that help is available at the critical moment someone has decided to seek assistance.
Treatment professionals from Solstice Wellness & Counseling said the program is successful because clinicians work directly with the people in need to determine the type and level of treatment that will provide the best benefit.
“The long-term effects that Straight…to…Treatment can have are to empower the individuals in active use to enter recovery, and to reduce the negative encounters with law enforcement that those with addiction may experience throughout their time actively using,” said Solstice Co-occurring Counselor Angelina Cifelli. “Solstice is excited to continue being a part of this growing program with the hopes to see continued long-term positive effects within the community.”
Treatment for the Mount Holly program will be provided by Solstice, which previously operated in Pemberton Township. That program will now be served by Maryville Addiction Treatment Center.
“Maryville is proud to partner with the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office on the Straight…to…Treatment initiative to help get individuals suffering from substance use disorder the help they so desperately need,” said Maryville CEO Kendria McWilliams.
Prosecutor Coffina said he was very appreciative that Maryville is joining Straight…to Treatment.
“They already have been a great resource for the program as a treatment provider in our County,” he said, “and having them available to perform initial screenings at the Pemberton Police Department will be a major asset for the Township.”
The other Straight…to Treatment locations are served by Hand ‘n’ Heart and Oaks Integrated Care.
Straight…to Treatment locations and hours:
City of Burlington PD, 525 High Street, Wednesdays and Thursdays: *9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Evesham Twp. PD, 984 Tuckerton Road, Mondays: noon – 7 p.m.
Mount Holly Twp. PD, 23 Washington Street, Mondays: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Pemberton Twp. PD, 500 Pemberton-Browns Mills Road, Tuesdays: Noon – 6 p.m.
*(Note that the hours for Burlington have changed)
For more information, visit https://burlpros.org/community-outreach/opioid-treatment/.