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Telegram & Gazette
Date: 7/2/17

America is in the worst opiate epidemic ever, and our Commonwealth is among the nation’s hardest hit. There were 1,933 confirmed opioid-related deaths in 2016, per the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Put another way, last year opiate addiction claimed the lives of 161 people each month, 37 people each week, and five people each day.

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Lowell Sun
Date: 6/21/17

CHELMSFORD -- There's strength in seeking help.

That's one of the messages Chelmsford resident Jodi Tarantino hopes to convey as the new host of Airing Addiction, a weekly radio program on WTAG 580 AM in Worcester.

Tarantino, a licensed social worker and program director of residential services at Spectrum Health System Inc.'s Charles J. Faris Recovery Center in Westboro, said she hopes to destigmatize addiction, treatment and behavioral health in general.

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Telegram & Gazette
Date: 10/09/16

WORCESTER – Brian Keith, a 37-year-old city resident and banker who's recovering from crack cocaine and alcohol addictions, said he hadn't worked out in three months.

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Telegram & Gazette
Date: 12/18/16

Simply put, the scope of the current opioid epidemic is staggering. According to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more people died from drug overdoses last year than in any year on record. And, the number of overdose deaths involving opioids (including prescription opioid pain relievers and heroin), has nearly quadrupled since 1999. No community is immune. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health recently reported that 209 people lost their battle with opioid addiction last year in Worcester County alone. That's 17 people a month or four people each week.

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Telegram & Gazette
Date: 8/9/16

Law enforcement, for many years, has had the ability to detain intoxicated individuals if police determined that they represented a danger to themselves or others. Inexplicably, those rules had not been updated to include drug users, even as the ongoing opioid epidemic began to swell throughout the Commonwealth, including in Worcester County where between 2014 and last year the increase in overdose deaths matched or was slightly worse percentage-wise than the state as a whole.

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