Union County considering DART operations

Union County considering DART operations
(Source: WTOL)
(Source: WTOL)

Union County, Ohio located just outside of Columbus is the fastest growing county in Ohio. It also has a growing heroin and opiate epidemic happening.

That's why Union County officials came to Toledo Thursday to meet with the Lucas County Sheriff Department's Drug Addiction Response Team (DART).

The county is considering forming their own DART operation, which helps get addicts in detox and recovery programs to help them come clean.

"And if we can help these people with serious drug problems at some point in time, let's get them into treatment," said Union County Juvenile Court Judge Charlotte Eufinger.

Since its formation in 2014, Lucas County DART has handled just over 2,200 overdose cases. Seventy four percent of the addicts got the help they needed from seven law enforcement and eleven treatment agencies involved in DART.

Overdoes have continued to climb and have yet to plateau.

"A lot of work is being done by a lot of people throughout the county so I cannot imagine what it would look like if that work had not been done," Lucas County Sheriff John Tharp said.

Sheriff Jamie Patton says addiction in predominately rural Union County is all about supply and demand. The proximity to Columbus  makes drugs easier to find and buy.

"We're just trying to stay effective and try to educate people that this is not the direction to go," Sheriff Patton said.

Sheriff Patton will now take information from the meeting to determine if what works for Lucas County can work in Union County as well.

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