{{featured_button_text}}

The federal government isn’t responding to the drug epidemic as it has to other public safety crises, La Crosse Police Chief Ron Tischer told stakeholders Tuesday.

“And it’s something that affects every single person in this country right now,” he said.

State Sen. Jennifer Shilling and state Rep. Steve Doyle met Tuesday in La Crosse with law enforcement, elected and health officials, addiction specialists and others during a series of round-table meetings designed to develop solutions to rising methamphetamine, heroin and opiate use.

Stakeholders spent much of the discussion examining hurdles, from funding obstacles and a lack of resources to a lack of sober housing.

“For many years, people looked to law enforcement to solve this problem, and we’re finally realizing this is not a law enforcement problem,” Tischer said. “It’s a societal problem.”

Drug dealers deserve consequences and addicts need treatment, although the court-ordered method will fail when they don’t have the drive to get sober, he said.

You have free articles remaining.

Become a Member

Register for more free articles.
Stay logged in to skip the surveys.

“People who are addicts don’t care if they get arrested,” Tischer said. “We really need more funding for counseling services and treatment facilities that people want to attend.”

About 50 percent of La Crosse County Jail inmates are on withdrawal protocols and many suffer from untreated mental illness, La Crosse County Sheriff Steve Helgeson said. Before they leave, inmates learn where they can go for help, are warned that their abstinence means a decreased tolerance, and told how to administer Narcan, a drug that counteracts an opiate overdose.

The amount of Narcan used in La Crosse is “unbelievable,” Tischer said. Some users have been revived multiple times and, even that close to death, “they don’t get it,” he said.

“Addiction is a brain disease, which is why they don’t get it,” said David Onsrud, family practitioner and medical director for the addiction programs at Mayo Clinic Health System.

There are just three physicians at La Crosse’s medical institutions authorized to prescribe Suboxone, a drug used to treat opiate addiction, Onsrud said.

Subscribe to Daily Headlines

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.
0
0
0
0
0

(5) comments

Alexandra101

It is very good, but look at the information at this address. carding forum 2017

Alexandra101

It can be quite difficult to come up with ideas and relevant content for all your essays; that’s a fact! Also, you may unfortunately lack the time required by drafting and fleshing out the perfect paper. This is why you must consider our amazing online essay service.Great!

Alexandra101

Wow, i am glad that there are touching this sensitive topic on drug epidemic, its really nice of you, so wait, hocome you guys didnt check essayontime writing service reviews out, they could have helped as well!!

Bullflap

I'm a big fan of La Crosse's police chief. He's the right guy at the right time...in reading the Tribune online everyday, it appears he has his hands full. We never had crime like this when I was a kid growing up on Sunrise Drive.

Jobaba

Perhaps if we obtain a fleet of Bearcats, the expenditure will show these addicts that we mean business?

Perhaps if we obtain more inaccurate police dogs we can finally end the scourge of drunk driving?

And, you know my rant…If we round up every man woman and child that hasn't attended DARE and send them through. Because as the police keep telling us "DARE WORKS!"

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.