KIRKLAND, Wash. — U.S. Congresswoman Suzan DelBene has announced nearly $1.3 million to establish a new drug treatment program at the Kirkland City Jail.
Kirkland is now set to create a program that aims to reduce cases of overdose in repeat users.
The money will be provided through federal funding according to a Saturday press release.
In 2018, over 47,000 Washingtonians were regular opioid users; Half of those users are expected to have been released from a Washington jail.
King County saw a 137% increase in overdose deaths from 2019 to 2022, growing from 422 to 1002 cases.
“People in our jails and prisons are disproportionately living with substance use issues while also lacking the critical support needed to address these conditions,” said DelBene. “This new program in Kirkland will help provide incarcerated people with the necessary tools to combat the disease of addiction and better prepare them to reintegrate into society.”
Kirkland Mayor Penny Sweet also commented on the matter.
“This is a critical step in helping Kirkland and our region bridge the gap between public safety and public health,” said Sweet.
©2023 Cox Media Group