Cameron County Joins Office of Attorney General’s Treatment Initiative

September 13, 2022 | Topic: LETI

Announcement Marks 18th County to Join OAG’s Program with Local Law Enforcement to Connect Individuals Suffering from Substance Use to Treatment Services

PENNSYLVANIA—Attorney General Josh Shapiro today announced that Cameron County has joined the Law Enforcement Treatment Initiative (LETI), a program launched by Attorney General Shapiro in collaboration with law enforcement that provides assistance to Pennsylvanians suffering from substance use disorder in enrolling in treatment services. Seventeen counties across the Commonwealth have previously joined the LETI program.

PA LETI is a law enforcement-led treatment initiative that will allow Pennsylvanians in Cameron County seeking treatment for substance use disorder to use their local law enforcement, county officials, and community stakeholders, to contact Cameron, Elk, Mckean Counties Alcohol & Drug Abuse Services without the threat of arrest.

“We lose 14 Pennsylvanias a day to the opioid epidemic,” said Attorney General Josh Shapiro. “Connecting individuals to the treatment they need will save lives, make our communities stronger, and help minimize the stigma associated with substance use disorder. I commend District Attorney Malizia and our law enforcement partners across Cameron County for implementing this program in their communities.”

Shapiro said partnering Cameron County law enforcement agencies and others under PA LETI will:

  • Open their doors to those suffering from substance use disorder.
  • Help identify individuals seeking treatment services.
  • Assist with ensuring that people have transportation to treatment services.
  • Maintain relationships with our local drug and alcohol administration to understand availability, and collect data to study outcomes.

In Cameron County, individuals can contact a member of law enforcement, county official, or community stakeholder at any time to ask for a referral or to be connected to treatment with no threat of arrest or prosecution. This policy also includes the ability for law enforcement to connect individuals to treatment at their discretion. Law enforcement and county leadership in Cameron County will be partnering with Cameron, Elk, Mckean Counties Alcohol & Drug Abuse Services to facilitate these referrals.

“The criminal law is currently the only device law enforcement has to address drug addiction, and the LETI program is a welcome alternative and another tool to help deal with the current drug epidemic for those who want to break the cycle.” said Cameron County District Attorney Paul Malizia.

The LETI program will continue the work that Cameron County has been doing to address the opioid epidemic in their community.

“We are pleased to be a partner in the LETI program with law enforcement and the District Attorney in Cameron County, “ said Angela Eckstrom, Executive Director of Cameron, Elk, Mckean Counties Alcohol & Drug Abuse Services. “LETI gives individuals an opportunity to choose treatment over punishment to address their disease. This opportunity benefits the individual in need of treatment and the community as a whole. The LETI program is another step to help reduce the stigma of addiction and give individuals life-saving treatment.”

Agent Janene Holter, PhD, is the Office of Attorney General’s dedicated full-time agent who coordinates PA LETI. Her work includes training, writing policies for each participating county, convening key community stakeholders, and case management of LETI referrals.

LETI currently operates in Berks, Bradford, Carbon, Chester, Clearfield, Columbia, Dauphin, Delaware, Elk, Fayette, Mifflin, Montgomery, Northumberland, Schuylkill, Snyder, Somerset, and Wyoming counties. District Attorneys in Pennsylvania interested in starting a PA LETI program should contact the Office of Attorney General at 570-826-2483.

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