$44,000 grant will help fight inmate drug addiction

Dane County will get $44,000 to help fight opiate drug addiction.

Dane County Executive’s office said the county has been awarded a state grant of more than $44,000 to help reduce opiate abuse through treatment and prevention.

Dane County Executive Joe Parisi said Thursday that the grant will fund an “intensive treatment and education” program to help county inmates find treatment and kick their addiction. The program will also work to reduce instances of inmates re-offending after release.

In recent years, Parisi’s office said the county, Madison mayor Paul Soglin have paired resources within Public Health Madison-Dane County to implement an opiates overdose abatement plan spearheaded by Safe Communities.

The plan unites local elected officials, law enforcement, health care providers, and alcohol and other drug abuse prevention community members to develop strategies to reduce addiction.

Recent efforts have included controlling access to and use of prescription painkillers such as OxyContin, oxycodone and Vicodin. Parisi’s office said people who abuse painkillers are said to make the switch to heroin because the drug is much cheaper and easier to obtain.

The grant announced Thursday was secured by the county’s Office of Equal Opportunity from the Wisconsin Office of Justice Assistance’s Residential Substance Abuse Treatment grant program.