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Duluth Police Departments accepts $899,055 grant for helping those heal from addiction

Over the next three years, this grant will allow the department to expand their focus on methamphetamine, reduce delays in outreach and assessment, and provide services to a growing caseload.
Duluth PD
Duluth PD(Duluth Police Department)
Published: Dec. 15, 2020 at 10:36 AM CST
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - The Duluth Police Department recently received a grant for $899,055, which will fund the creation of the Lake Superior Diversion and Substance Use Response Team over a three-year period.

This grant will help the evolution of their team over the next three years to allow the department to expand their focus on methamphetamine, reduce delays in outreach and assessment, and provide services to a growing caseload.

“Our existing Opioid Response Technician, Jess Nickila, has done a tremendous job with outreach and advocacy for people who are suffering from the scourge of addiction,” said Chief Mike Tusken, Duluth Police. “In her work, Jess lifts people up by giving them hope for a fresh start through her compassionate focus on saving lives and getting healthy. To be able to expand the reach of the hard work she is doing, we will save and renew lives while at the same time limiting the demand for opioids in our community.”

The addition of a Licensed Drug and Alcohol Counselor will provide immediate, within 24 business hours, assessment for treatment to all program participants, whether through police referral, self-referral, jail in-reach, or overdose outreach, regardless of residency or insurance.

“This grant will allow us to not only expand our current caseload to 20-30 more per year, but it also allows us to hire a Licensed Drug and Alcohol Counselor who will help us get people into treatment quicker,” said Lieutenant Jeff Kazel, Commander of the Lake Superior Drug and Violent Crime Task Force.

The Duluth Police Department is committed to continue to work towards helping people by removing drugs from our streets through enforcement, educating and normalizing discussions about addiction, and getting those suffering from addiction the resources they need to aid in recovery.

If you or someone you know needs to talk about recovery resources, call our Opioid Response Technician at (218) 391-9639.

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