Sheriff Hodgson’s assertions are suspect
If you watch the April 10, 2019 southcoasttoday.com video of the 287g immigration hearing held at the Bristol County House of Correction (BCHOC), you will see Sheriff Hodgson describing MS-13 gang members, violence, drug dealing and gun trafficking.
The gangs are terrorizing communities throughout Massachusetts, according to the sheriff, yet; in the December 13, 2018 edition of the Boston Globe, U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling reported his office’s stunning takedown of MS-13 gang members as one of the biggest success stories of the last year. According to Lelling, MS-13 has all but been eradicated in the Greater Boston area, and his office was running out of MS-13 targets. (https://www.bostonglobe.com/ metro/2018/12/13/primer/WD2nv WGnwnW831K4aVfwaK/story.html)
In light of what U.S. Attorney Lelling said: is Sheriff Hodgson willfully ignorant or just spending too much time at the White House angling for a job?
The sheriff was elected to manage a jail, not promote irresponsible Immigration and Customs Enforcement policies that use impoverished migrants as bargaining chips. Law enforcement duties must be left to trained professionals.
Again, straying off topic, Hodgson alluded to “huge quantities” of opioids flooding our streets and his ongoing efforts to keep our communities safe. So, just what steps is the sheriff taking to keep us safe? Well let’s examine that area.
With many incarcerated people suffering from substance use disorder (SUD), how many new treatment beds has the Bristol County House of Corrections set up for treating SUD? What is the effectiveness of treatment and associated rehabilitation? How are effectiveness of program/ rehabilitation activities monitored? Does staff recognize the signs and symptoms of an impending suicide? What measures does the sheriff incorporate to prevent suicides among those he detoxes “cold turkey’? The medical literature says opiate/alcohol withdrawal without appropriate medical supervision can lead to death/suicide.
If the sheriff is serious about keeping the community safe, he must think long-term when addressing the opioid problem in his facility and use evidence-based techniques for fighting addiction, for example, tapering techniques and medication based treatments like Suboxone film strips that dissolve in 30 to 60 seconds and psychological support all help prevent suicide, ensuring a smoother transition back into the community. (https://www.nejm.org/ doi/full/10.1056/NEJMra1604339)
Julia Kiechel, South Dartmouth
Eileen Marum, Marion
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