GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The state police just released some alarming statistics on heroin.
That’s the number of people who’ve died from a heroin overdose in Franklin and Hampshire County since November.
The police told 22News it’s a number that’s not getting any smaller.
We have a lot of highways, and when you have highways, you have heroin. And we’re getting it from all directions,” said Greenfield Police Chief Robert Haigh Jr.
Greenfield Police told 22News they’ve had 21 reported heroin overdoses this year, with seven in the last two weeks.
It’s dangerous drug that’s becoming easier to get, and cheaper to buy.
An opiate task force has been formed for Hampshire and Franklin Counties, and on Monday, an addict overdose conference was held at Greenfield Community College.
Among the topics discussed; a lack of treatment centers.
The Beacon House for women in Greenfield is a treatment and recovery center. There are currently 14 patients, seven of them have a heroin addiction.
“Rather than saying to someone, don’t ever use Heroin again, we’re going to talk to them and educate them about overdose and how to prevent an overdose. The overdosing is so easy to do, and there’s not a lot of awareness out there,” said Samantha Purinton, the Program Director of the Beacon House for Women.
The most common reasons for an overdose include suppliers cutting the drug with a synthetic substance, and using the drug simultaneously with other drugs, like prescription pills.
“We can’t arrest our way out of this problem,” said Greenfield Police Chief Robert Haigh Jr., “We need to create long-term care and we need to be the first line of defense to get that for them.”