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Long Island has recently seen an increase in heroin use that has ended the lives of some teenagers due to overdose (Cuadra-Fernandez). The options for the addict and the non-addict user seem to be limited to either continuing use or making the huge step in entering rehab. This proposal intends to show that an intermediary facility that can help during times of crisis and will provide a conduit for the user towards rehabilitation without forcing them into treatment. Through offering services that address the needs of the user in order to keep them alive, it is hoped that eventually they will enter rehabilitation and end their addictive behaviors before it results in death. Heroin is a drug that is extracted from poppies, making it a lucrative crop drug for many nations without other resources. There are three forms of the drug, one being a white powder, the other being a brown powder, and the last being a black, sticky product that is referred to as ‘black tar’. Heroin is often diluted with substances that look similar to the type of product that is being sold, such as adding powdered milk to white powder to extend its volume. Sometimes, however, a substance that is toxic such as strychnine will be found in the drug, increasing the harmful effects and possibly leading to a more assured death through drug overdose (Cuadra-Fernandez). The drug is so powerful that anytime an addict is not on heroin, they are suffering from withdrawal, so any day that is spent without the drug is painful and miserable for the user (Rasmussen and Benson 47). According to Moraes, there are two terms that refer to the type of use that a user of heroin will fall into. A ‘chipper’ is an occasional user who uses the drug recreationally and with an addiction that requires a focused attention to the drug. A ‘junkie’ is someone who cannot go without the drug and has behaviors that can be described as associated with addiction. Stephens discusses types of heroin users and labels them either addicts or the concerned non-addicts. Concerned non-addicts are in jeopardy of becoming an addict and have a concern towards that regard. Non-concerned non-addicts have no fear that they will become addicts. In comparing the types of users, the addict typically is no longer in mainstream life, their lifestyle is more deviant, they are likely to be unemployed, and have a higher rate of other criminal activity to support their habit. The concerned non-addict tend to still be “bonded to conventional activities. They were more likely to be high school graduates, avoided engaging in illegal activities, and expressed concern about the consequences of heroin use on their job and families’ (Stephans 61). Beyond the influences the use of heroin in its pharmacological effects, are the medical issues that can come from the use of the drug. Because the drug is often administered through hypodermic needle, the risks of blood pathogens being transmitted are very high. Diseases such as HIV, Hepatitis C and Hepatitis B can be a very real outcome to drug use (Cuadra-Fernandez). As well, the social consequences can be higher than expected, especially for a teenager who is unprepared for the permanence that can result when the drug use leads to arrest, overdose, or discovery which will all lead to the behavior being revealed to family and friends, thus placing them in a position of being somewhat of an outcast. The group that the crisis center that is proposed in this paper would address would be primarily made up of ’chippers’ and concerned non-addicts, their use not yet putting them into the downward social and physical spiral that an addict will experience. While the center would certainly
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Drugs such as
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