43605 residents come together to get handle on opioid problem

43605 residents come together to get handle on opioid problem
(Source: WTOL)

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - The 43605 Zip Code has the highest number of drug and overdose deaths in Northwest Ohio.

43605 is in east Toledo.

That's why an opiate town hall meeting was held there on Saturday.

Folks didn't just want to talk about addiction.

They wanted to get to the heart of the problem by coming together to solve it.

Opiates are taking a toll on east Toledo and all parts of Lucas County.

"I really feel that between 80-90 percent of what we see in the criminal docket is somehow connected to the substance abuse situation," said Lucas County Common Pleas Court Judge Stacy Cook.

There were discussion groups and on-site referrals for treatment.

"We have inpatient programs and outpatient programs. We try to add as many components as possible to help a person on the road to recovery," said Mary Beth Alberti of Arrowhead Behavioral Health.

Jamie Cashin is on the road to recovery.

She kicked her heroin addiction last year by getting help.

"You have to hit rock bottom. You can't force someone into recovery because the addict will do it for that person, not themselves. You have to hit rock bottom and want that change for your life," said Jamie.

Nobody can explain why the streets of east Toledo have become ground zero for addiction.

But some here believe it can be tackled by working from the neighborhood out instead of the professionals in.

"Getting with law enforcement. Letting them know where the drug houses are, drug dealers are. They know the personality of the neighborhood. That's the best way to fight in. Not a cookie cutter answer," said Ross Horton of FACT, Families and Addicts Coming Together.

It's just one way suggested that one zip code could shake a reputation it would rather not have.

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