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Sober Living Home Divides Community Members
Community members recently learned that a new sober living home is going to be established in their neighborhood and the discordant views were immediate.
Right after the neighbors learned about the home, they attended a meeting with the local Board of Selectmen and raised their concerns regarding the new establishment to the members of the board. The local residents claimed that they don't lack sympathy for the people affected by the opioid epidemic but they don't believe that Tewksbury is the right location.
Worries about how the facility could cause a reduction in local property values and safety have also been brought up.
But the public hasn't had only negative responses. The new establishment has not only been receiving positive feedback from some residents and support from volunteers but also financial assistance through donations from the community.
The home, called Into Action Recovery, has set up an online fundraiser about 40 weeks ago and has surpassed its goal and collected more than $10,300.
The nonprofit organization that is expected to accommodate 12 patients who will be provided with long-term therapeutic, spiritual and educational assistance as well as 12-step programs to treat opioid and/or alcohol use disorders who have been able to go through drug detox and remain in a drug rehab program for at least 30 days.
Applicants need to be males and go through a background check and those who have a record of inappropriate sexual conduct or a history of violent behavior or will not be considered.
The person behind the new sober living home is a mother who lost her 31-year-old son to a drug overdose a couple of years ago while he was on a waiting list for a sober living home.
Also in 2016, Gov. Charlie Baker had cut $200,000 in funds that would be going toward addiction treatment and sober living services. The cuts meant that capital that would have assisted the establishment of the new home would no longer be provided. Into Action Recovery secured subsidy for operations earlier this year when $100,000 in state funding was allocated to the foundation by State Rep. Jim Miceli. Thanks to his support, the sober living home is expected to have 12-step programs available in the fall.