According to authorities, Franklin Lakes NJ police will not arrest or criminally charge people who come forward to indicate that they need assistance to deal with addiction to heroin or any other opiates.
The new amnesty program calls for heroin addicts to be referred to drug counseling and addiction recovery services instead of being arrested and prosecuted for drug crimes.
The policy change was implemented in response to what has been referred to as an “epidemic” of heroin abuse in Franklin Lakes and throughout New Jersey. State officials have learned that far too many drug users choose not to get the help they need to beat their dangerous drug addictions.
Beyond that, many heroin addicts elect not to come forward because they are afraid of being prosecuted for heroin possession and ending up incarcerated. That’s why Bergen County prosecutors have worked with the Franklin Lakes Borough Council to develop the new policy.
The police chief for the Franklin Lakes Police Department recently said that the department intends to “provide whatever help it can to addicts who themselves seek help or for whom help is sought.” That’s important because it means that the new amnesty program will also apply when a heroin user’s parents, children, spouse or other relative contact law enforcement.
To learn more about this case, read the Patch.com article, “Franklin Lakes Police Implement Heroin Amnesty Program.”