MORRISTOWN, NJ - Statistics released from Morris County Sheriff's Office show that fatal overdoses are on the rise in Morris County and in New Jersey.  Statistics show that fatal overdoses are up by 38 percent, announced the Morris County Sheriff's Office.

Since the beginning of the new year, 26 individuals in Morris County have suffered suspected lethal overdoses, including one Thursday night, said the sheriffs' office. In the first 14 weeks of 2019, by comparison, there were 16 suspected fatal overdoses, they said.

“Morris County, right now, is following a statewide trend of increased fatal opioid-related overdoses. It’s possible that individuals struggling with addiction feel increased stress during this pandemic or, because of social distancing, lack direct contact with supportive friends and family who normally would check on their welfare,” Morris County Sheriff
James M. Gannon said. “Help from the Hope One team is here, just a phone call away. We don’t accept that anyone agonizing over a heroin addiction or substance use disorder be alone without resources and support, especially at this very difficult time.” 

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Hope One, Morris County's substance abuse and mental health outreach program, was launched to stem the crisis of opioid addiction and overdoses. Hope One, which has made more than 10,400 contacts with individuals since its launch, is a partnership with the Rockaway-based Prevention Is Key (PIK) and its sister agency, the Center for Addiction Recovery, Education & Success (CARES); Daytop-NJ, the Mental Health Association of Essex and Morris, and the Morris County Department of Human Services.

Morris County Sheriff’s Office Corporal Erica Valvano, the Hope One coordinator, urging the 14 municipal police departments in Morris County that are trained in the Police Assisted Addiction and Recovery Initiative (PAARI) to refer known individuals struggling with addiction to Hope One.

“Hope One-PAARI would like to make an aggressive approach to assist people before they overdose,” Corporal Valvano said.

If you or someone you care about needs help, contact the following services:

  • CENTER FOR ADDICTION RECOVERY, EDUCATION & SUCCESS (CARES): 24-hour support line at 973-625-1143. CARES also will deliver Narcan, upon request, in a safe, non- contact way.
  • HOPE ONE: 973-590-0300. For Narcan training via Zoom, please contact Morris County Sheriff’s Office Corporal Erica Valvano at or at 973-590-0300.
  • MENTAL HEALTH ASSOCIATION OF ESSEX AND MORRIS: Peer support line from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.: 877-760-4987; 866- 445-3902; 800-381-2059. The Mental Health Association has added a daytime number for peer support, Monday through Friday, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please call: 877-760-4987.


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