Letter: The Never-Ending Heroin Epidemic

We continue to hear about the easy access to heroin spiked with potent controlled pharmaceuticals and the proliferation of sober homes for heroin addicts in our cities. Florida now leads the country in overdose deaths from Carfentanil, an elephant tranquilizer. Anyone might wonder if a zoo somewhere may be the source of this federally controlled substance and one could speculate why there is such a great availability of heroin everywhere? Yet our elected officials focus all of their attention on regulating sober homes and reversing drug addict overdoses with the dwindling supply of Narcan. We are told that it now takes several doses of Narcan to reverse an overdose of heroin spiked with Carfentanil. It appears that the solution to the heroin epidemic is to buy more Narcan, or perhaps we could solve the problem by investing in Narcan stock options. The later solution may not be too far-fetched based on the track record of our elected leadership.

A two-year task force investigation into sober homes headed by State Attorney Dave Aronberg’s office has just announced two arrests, an owner and manager of a sober home. Per the Palm Beach Post article, published Oct. 26, these arrests were supported by the FBI, the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the Florida Division of Insurance Fraud, the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, and police chiefs and officers from Delray Beach, Boynton Beach and elsewhere. To quote State Attorney Aronberg on the sober home arrests, “We’re going to hold those accountable who have destroyed lives so needlessly.” Is he talking about owners and managers of sober homes? Shouldn’t his first priority be stopping the heroin and Carfentanil traffickers? After all, we have him to thank for shutting down all those nasty Florida pill mills to stop the overdose deaths resulting from the trafficking of prescription pain medication, and that was before he was elected state attorney.

Six months after the first meeting of yet another task force, the Palm Beach County Heroin Task Force, this group announced its plan for a program to follow addicts after an overdose emergency room visit, offering them a detox program to include housing them and the pharmaceuticals to wean them off the heroin. Shouldn’t stopping the flow of Carfentanil-laced heroin be part of the plan? Doesn’t anyone care about stopping all of the crime and violence that the trafficking of heroin and other controlled substances bring? How many burglaries are occurring daily to fund someone’s heroin addiction? How many murders are heroin related? Doesn’t anyone care that our tax dollars are being used to fix the results of a heroin epidemic, when the solution is to stop the flow of heroin?

The vast majority in law enforcement are good and upstanding individuals who only want to serve and protect with honor. In consideration of these fine men and women who put their lives on the line daily, I have one last question for State Attorney Aronberg, Sheriff Ric Bradshaw, and all of our elected officials in federal, state, county and local government. When will we see a task force to investigate the source of the heroin and Carfentanil flowing into South Florida, or is someone stacking $20 bills in a spare bedroom to look the other way?

Anne Kuhl, The Acreage