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DA’s office gets $1.2M grant to aid drug-endangered children

January 23, 2022 GMT

BROCKTON, Mass. (AP) — The Plymouth district attorney’s office has received a nearly $1.2 million federal grant to help its ongoing efforts to assist children facing danger because of adult drug use.

The money from the Bureau of Justice Assistance’s Comprehensive Opioid, Stimulant, and Substance Abuse Program Resource Center will be used over a three-year period.

“We have been working tirelessly to build local capacity to respond to children and families impacted by substance use disorders,” District Attorney Timothy Cruz said in a statement. “Identifying and offering support to children living in homes with addiction is an important step in disrupting the cycles of trauma, and helping children and families build resilience. Securing this grant money will help assist us in enhancing Plymouth County’s response to the trauma that these children are witnessing.”

Plymouth County has been particularly hard hit by the opioid epidemic. From 2010-2020, Plymouth County had the second highest opioid-related overdose death rate of the 14 counties in Massachusetts, with 278 deaths per 100,000 people, the DA’s office said.

The grant funds will be used to expand upon existing Drug Endangered Children Initiative efforts, including improving the police identification and referral of drug-endangered children, and increasing referrals and awareness.