Senator Ross Appointed to Special Committee to Study Addiction Treatment Options

January 16, 2014                                   

Boston – Senator Richard Ross (R-Wrentham) has been appointed by Senate Minority Leader Bruce E. Tarr (R-Gloucester) to serve on the Senate Special Committee to Study the Application of Section 35 and Drug Addiction Treatment Options in the Commonwealth. The special committee was created this afternoon by an order of the Senate in response to increasing levels of drug and alcohol addiction in the Commonwealth.

“Drug addiction is an issue that permeates the Commonwealth, affecting individuals and families of all backgrounds and threatening the safety of our communities,” said Senator Ross. “As a member of the Joint Committees on the Judiciary, Public Safety, and Mental Health and Substance Abuse, I have seen the broad effects this dangerous disease has and hope to bring a unique perspective to this special committee.”

Pursuant to Section 35 of Chapter 123 of the General Laws, courts may commit an individual who puts themselves or others at risk because of their alcohol or drug addiction. The individual may be committed to an inpatient substance abuse treatment program for up to 90 days. If beds are unavailable, the correctional facilities at Bridgewater and Framingham, the Women’s Addiction Treatment Center in New Bedford, and the Men’s Addiction Treatment Center in Brockton will also provide treatment if there are no beds available at a licensed treatment facility.

The special committee will evaluate the treatment options that are available under Section 35 throughout Massachusetts. It will identify all issues that need to be met, and develop solutions on how best to resolve those issues.

Please contact the office of Senator Ross with any questions or concerns at (617) 722-1555 or Richard.Ross@masenate.gov.

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