web analytics


Healing the Wounded by Addiction

Jeff Humphrey, Media Manager, 509.625.6308

Friday, September 30, 2022 at 2:38 p.m

When police and sheriff’s deputies arrest someone for eligible crimes, they can be taken to jail or diverted to the new Spokane Regional Stabilization Center.

“Normally, when they want to go for treatment, we can offer them this resource. Then we can take them there and get them into an abstinence program, a mental health program, or a co-occurring disorder,” explained Spokane Police Officer Richie Plunkett.

For example, a young woman was recently admitted to the Stabilization Center after deputies found her sleeping in a bed of flowers.

“So I offered her stabilization here. A chance to get help with her meds and she accepted. We were able to avoid a trespassing arrest and get her here and hopefully get her the help she needs.” said Deputy Travis Pendell.

Spokane County, the city of Spokane and local leaders established the Regional Stabilization Center last fall when they realized that someone with a drug or mental health problem could not be successfully rehabilitated behind bars.

“Yes, and that’s what’s beautiful about this facility, which gives them this opportunity. If they need mental health help, if they need to seek medication to help with that, he does. If they have a substance abuse problem, we can help them in that area,” Spokane County Commissioner Mary Kuney detailed.

Medical professionals at the Stabilization Center can identify care plans and prescribe medications that can help someone who is ready and willing to start a new path beyond the revolving door of our county jail.

Patients enjoy healthy meals and have safe and clean places to sleep.

The staff at Pioneer Human Services knows that by providing these daily basics, their patients are free to focus on solving their individual problems.

“I’ve been in treatment over 49 times in my life, and I realized that I didn’t want to quit. I didn’t want to get out of my security blanket, which was drugs and alcohol,” admitted Clay, a former patient at the Center for ‘Stabilization.

After 45 years of life on our streets and more than a hundred arrests, Clay was diverted to the Stabilization Center last March.

“That place made me comfortable enough to stick with it, and I stuck with it, and I’m still stuck with it,” Clay vowed.

Clay has been clean and sober for six months.

“I still keep in touch with these people because they’re my new friends and they’re real,” Clay said during a recent visit with staff at the center that provided Clay’s treatment.

With the help of law enforcement referrals, the center now treats an average of 35 patients each day.

But this new way of offering people a course to get out of addiction would never have been possible without regional cooperation.

“The problems we face today are really regional issues. So if we can come together with our regional partners to tackle these issues together, that’s what we need to do. And I am very pleased with this collaborative effort to connect people to the resources they need,” said Spokane Mayor Nadine Woodward.

In the first quarter of 2022, 86 percent of people who received treatment at the center reported an improvement in their well-being and mental health recovery.

In addition to treatment, Pioneer connected 46 percent of those same patients, including Clay, with a new place to live, off the streets of Spokane.

“And I think this shows that when we really come together and put politics aside, we’re going to make a difference for our community and our citizens,” Kuney concluded.

More about…

Source: Healing the Wounded by Addiction