Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Former Drug Addict Questioned California’s Bid to Pay Addicts for Sober Up

As drug overdose deaths rise in California, state leaders are considering paying addicts to stay sober, but a former drug addict has questioned the effectiveness of incentives known to SB 110.

Yolanda Terrazas, a former addict and current secretary of The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center in Anaheim, told The Epoch Times that the proposed law only provides a temporary solution because addicts would use the money to buy drugs.

“Giving money to someone with an addiction problem doesn’t give them coping skills, doesn’t give them ways to manage their feelings and emotions,” Terrazas said.

“All they’re doing is giving them money to stop temporarily and they’ll just turn around and spend that money and find another way to get money. Someone else will pay for their addiction while they’re temporarily They will gain nothing if they don’t have the skills, knowledge or tools to use them.”

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Terrazas said the addict needs more proactive solutions, such as organizations that provide programs that allow the addict to find life-long abstinence. He said that instead of funding addicts, the money should be used to help find jobs for individuals completing addiction programs.

Terrazas joined the organization’s six-month rehab program to calm down, before finding employment in the Salvation Army eight months earlier. The program taught her communication and employability skills while providing a structured program that she recognized to help her calm down.

Every day, the beneficiaries of the program are tested. Terrazas is nearing its two-year sober anniversary next month.

While contingency management payments to encourage abusers to stay sober continue to be discussed, similar legislation is supported by both Republicans and Democrats.

According to co-author of the Substance Use Contingency Bill Assembly Member Laurie Davis, studies have shown that contingency management programs have been effective for veterans who are meth addicts.

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“California’s opioid epidemic shows no signs of slowing down, even during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Assembly member Laurie Davis told The Epoch Times in an email. “For years, our state has struggled to deal with this crisis and over the years we have seen preventable misery and loss.”

Davis said SB 110 is “a common sense measure to try an above approach to really encourage people to get off substance abuse.”

The law proposes that through MediCal, low-income residents can receive substance use disorder services and care.

Through the proposed contingency management services as outlined in SB 110, beneficiaries will be limited to the number of incentives they receive.

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This News Originally From – The Epoch Times

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