A $1.28 million federal grant will help fund innovative law enforcement initiative to battle the heroin epidemic by pairing enforcement with treatment, U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. of Paterson announced Thursday.
"We must do all that we can to ensure people are receiving the care they need, while also ensuring that law enforcement officials have the resources to crack down on unlawful heroin and prescription opioid traffickers throughout our state,” said Pascrell (D-NJ) in announcing the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) grant funding through the COPS Anti-Heroin Task Force Program.
The integrated approach, authorities hope, will “bridge the gap between overdose and treatment,” he said.
Some of the money will be used to fund programs such as one recently launched by the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office, which secured several 5-day detox hospital beds, then conducted a five-day roundup of addicts, authorities announced Thursday.
The defendants ranged from 21 to 58 years old and came from various towns throughout Bergen County.
Last year, Rep. Pascrell and Rep. Dave Reichert (R-WA), fellow chair of the Congressional Law Enforcement Caucus, introduced the COPS Improvement and Reauthorization Act, which helps fund initiatives aimed at helping law enforcement officials, including school resource officers, solve problems before they escalate.
The measure reauthorizes and codifies the COPS office within the Department of Justice. It also would expand current grants to include the TROOPS-TO-COPS program providing for the hiring of former armed service members, as well as for a technology grant program focused on crime prevention.
For more information about the COPS Anti-Heroin Task Force Program, call the COPS Office Response Center at 800-421-6770, or visit the COPS Office online at www.cops.usdoj.gov.
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