Congressman Chris Gibson convened a heroin summit with law enforcement officials from across the 19th Congressional District at his Kingston office last week. The summit was called to help identify and address the many challenges facing law enforcement personnel and communities across the region, according to a media release.
Schoharie County Sheriff Tony Desmond joined other law enforcement officers, municipal officials and district attorneys to discuss the scope of the problem and share best practices on how to combat it.
“The scourge of heroin and drug addiction is something I am hearing about often as I travel across the 11 counties of my district,” Gibson said in a media release. “This is a multi-faceted problem that needs educators, treatment specialists, the healthcare community, and parents to join together to develop comprehensive solutions.”
Dutchess County Undersheriff Kirk Imperati gave a presentation on the growing dimensions and negative impacts the heroin crisis is having in his county.
“This is a real and expanding threat across Dutchess County,” Imperati said. “More and more people are dying from overdoses and crime is growing by addicts desperate to get cash to buy more drugs. This is leading to our jails filling up with criminals addicted to heroin who are not receiving the treatment they really need and the jails can’t provide.”
Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro reviewed the growing cost heroin addiction is having on county resources, including treatment expenses and law enforcement. He also discussed new measures and programs the county is instituting to combat the issue.
Other speakers included Desmond, Ulster County Undersheriff Frank Faluotico, Ulster County District Attorney Holly Carnright, Sullivan County Sheriff Mike Schiff and Greene County Sheriff Greg Seeley.