Regarding the Jan. 25 letter from Jennifer McKinney:
I agree drug use is often involved with homicides. My professional experience in social services tells me that substance abuse, addiction and crime are not simplistic.
Many years ago I had a person seeking treatment for drug use. We looked at options and tried to find a residential treatment center. We worked three months and lacked success in finding a long-term center that allowed her to maintain a relationship with her mother, who was ill. Several months later, she was involved in a homicide. What a sad situation.
The Bureau of Justice Statistics Report shows “three out of every four convicted jail inmates were alcohol or drug involved at the time of their current offense.”
We have been warehousing substance abusers and addicts in our detention facilities. Thank goodness we now have options for individuals who are ordered to treatment by a judge. State Rep. Anna Crook has been instrumental in setting up the “Second Chance” facility.
But what about those who seek treatment prior to having legal issues? Many cannot find a residential treatment center that is accessible both financially and within a limited distance from family.
You cannot believe my sigh of relief when I heard there is a bipartisan effort by U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce and Gov. Richardson urging state legislators to address the issue of treatment prior to legal issues. Unfortunately too many people have died and too many families have fallen into shambles as a result of substance abuse in New Mexico.
We can no longer keep our head in the sand. We cannot afford to incarcerate. We must rehabilitate.
Parents provide continued support
I am the oldest daughter of Walter and Debbie Bradley and I would like to personally thank my parents for their commitment to our community.
One thing my parents have taught me is to always stand up for what you believe in and never give up. Even if you feel that you are defeated from the beginning you should fight until the end.
This is exactly what my parents and many other local parents did for the future education of the local children. They fought an uphill battle against our school board and in the eyes of those six people they were defeated; however, in the eyes of their children and the children in this community they are the true winners and those are the only eyes that really matter.
It takes a lot of courage and dedication to stand up for what you believe in and unfortunately in today’s society too many people sit back and do nothing. These parents who stood up and fought for their children are our local heroes.
I would like to once again thank my parents for their continued support and commitment to us. They truly are my heroes for everything they have done and continue to do.