Massachusetts State House
Boston, MA 02133
For Immediate Release
Friday, March 4, 2016
Media Contact: John Guilfoil (JGPR/Police)
Media Contact: Alex Booker (Ferrante)
Massachusetts Police Chiefs, Elected Officials and Addiction Recovery Partners to Hold a Press Conference at State House to Express Support for Good Samaritan Bill Amendment
Hearing Scheduled Monday Before Joint Judiciary Committee
BOSTON — Representative Ann-Margaret Ferrante (D-Gloucester) will be joined by law enforcement leaders from across the state who have committed to tackling drug addiction from the demand side in addition to the supply side. These law enforcement leaders have created new and innovative policing programs aimed at facilitating treatment and making more recovery options available for anyone who needs them.
Rep. Ferrante has filed an amendment to the 2011 Good Samaritan Law (M.G.L. 94C §34A). The amendment will be discussed by the Joint State House and Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday, March 7. Rep. Ferrante will gather earlier in the day with law enforcement and addiction recovery leaders from around Massachusetts.
In addition to encouraging people suffering from addiction to seek help and police departments to take direct action to help people seeking treatment, the amendment would also go a long way toward removing the stigma and shame of addiction by encouraging treatment without the threat of prosecution.
Rep. Ferrante, who represents Gloucester, has seen, first hand, the tremendous promise of the Gloucester Police Department ANGEL Initiative. Since the start of the ANGEL Initiative last year, 400 people have been placed into treatment, and the City of Gloucester has seen a nearly 1/3 reduction in property crimes most commonly associated with addiction, including break-ins, larcenies, and car breaks.
“Passing this bill will empower our police departments to continue and expand their innovative and lifesaving programs aimed at helping people into treatment,” Rep. Ferrante said. “We are seeing incredible results here in Gloucester, which began this discussion with the ANGEL Initiative. Since June of last year, the Gloucester Police have directly helped hundreds of people into treatment and we have also seen a dramatic reduction in property crime, a significant cost savings, and expansion of this program into all corners of the Commonwealth and United States.”
- Rep. Ann-Margaret Ferrante (Gloucester)
- Rep. Alice Peisch (Wellesley), Original Good Samaritan Bill sponsor
- Gloucester Police Chief Leonard Campanello
- Arlington Police Chief Frederick Ryan
- Sutton Police Chief Dennis J. Towle, President of the Central Mass. Chiefs of Police Association (Central Mass. Chiefs, and its nearly 70 member police chiefs, have endorsed the bill)
- Essex County Sheriff Frank G. Cousins Jr.
- John Rosenthal, Co-founder of the Police Assisted Addiction and Recovery Initiative (P.A.A.R.I.)
- Members of East Bridgewater HOPE for Recovery and the East Bridgewater Police Department
- Steven A. Tolman, President, Massachusetts AFL-CIO
- Municipal police chiefs and leaders from across the state
- Other elected officials from throughout the Commonwealth
MONDAY, March 7, 2016 at 11 a.m.
Massachusetts State House, Grand Staircase