Probation Dept. blends in recovery journey


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WILMINGTON — September is recognized as National Recovery Month.

The main goal in designating a specific month is to promote awareness and education regarding substance use treatment and mental health services. The overall goal is to assist and enable those with a mental health and/or substance use disorder to live a healthy and rewarding life.

Recovery Month celebrates the steps people in recovery are taking as well as the social workers, counselors, law enforcement, medical personnel, first responders, family members, and communities who are helping them along their recovery journey.

The 2019 Recovery Month Theme is “Join the Voices for Recovery: Together We Are Stronger.”

For the past several years, Ohio as a whole has been involved in several studies to evaluate why the state was hit so hard from the “opiate crisis.” This information was helpful; however, the statistics themselves were not helping people to recover. Clinton County noticed a need in this community and action was taken.

One example of this was the development of the “You-Turn” Drug Court in Clinton County Common Pleas Court, led by Judge John W. “Tim“ Rudduck.

This specialty court currently has 17 participants, with an anticipated six graduating at a special ceremony on Sept. 26. The public is invited to attend the drug court graduation, which will be held at the First Christian Church, 120 Columbus St. in Wilmington, at 7 p.m.

The “You-Turn” Drug Court consists of much more than going to court. It involves a thorough assessment and ongoing assessments of each participants’ specific needs. Treatment team members consist of local counselors, medical providers, law enforcement, education institutions, probation staff, and the judge.

An individualized approach and continued support offered to each individual person has proven to be effective in helping the participants be successful in their recovery journey.

A common misperception of recovery is “why don’t they just stop” or “this is the life they have chosen.” There is a very strong and often reciprocal relationship between substance use and mental health.

Most people are more likely to follow through with services and resources if these services are readily provided to them “on the spot.” The Clinton County Common Pleas Adult Probation Department is in tune with this reality in that two licensed staff are readily available to probationers.

If a crisis arises, then a licensed staff is able to respond very quickly. Individualized treatment services as well as specialized groups are also offered to probationers.

This approach has helped build and sustain the bridge between the Probation Department and the population it serves. Many of the probationers see the Probation Department as a helpful resource and source of support rather than as a fear factor.

For more information regarding nationwide Recovery Month events, please visit www.recoverymonth.gov or www.facebook.com/RecoveryMonth/ .

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