In the second of a two-part conversation, Greg interviews Judge Craig Hannah who sits on the bench in the nation’s only Opioid Court in the 8th Judicial District in Buffalo, NY. A former addict himself, now 18 years sober, Hannah details the role and efficacy of his courtroom’s daily involvement in addicts’ lives. Greg also speaks with the court’s case managers Brooke Crouse and Megan Carroll, as well as with Janet Gaskin, a case worker from Save the Michaels of the World, Inc., a resource for all aspects of addiction. Also, he speaks with Kevin, a participant in this program.
Greg learns about how Judge Hannah breaks down barriers between the court and addicts, and serves essentially as a coach. He explains how his court acts as a triage program, helping to prevent death by overdose in the window between arrest and entry into drug court. Diverting addicts to treatment, stabilizing them and identifying other forms of assistance is the solution to helping them rebuild their lives and stay on the path to recovery, despite the reality of likely relapse. The message is clear: “You can’t lock up addiction, it needs to be treated as an illness.” And the process to recovery requires patience.
Join Greg as he hears about a day in the life at Opioid Court, as shared by case managers who become involved during the first hours of sobriety where they determine what’s needed to manage each addict’s situation.