New task force aims to address Delta County’s need for drug abuse services


A task force has been formed in Delta County to address community needs based on a growing drug problem, announced Delta County Prosecutor Phil Strom.

The Delta County Task Force Against Substance Abuse held its first meeting Wednesday in Escanaba. The initial goal is to look at ways to provide rehabilitation services locally.

“We need to do a better job all around providing rehabilitation services to addicted individuals,” Strom said. “We need things like counseling, job training. An in-patient facility would be ideal because the first 30, 60, 90 days of rehabilitation process is really important. An in-patient facility also has greater success rates than just asking someone to do it on their own.”

Another need addressed by the task force is a way to educate the public on the extent of the drug problem in Delta County.

“I hope the task force can educate the community, youth and parents to know what drugs are being abused in the county. Also to educate the community in what issues we are dealing with and provide options and services for those experiencing addiction so that we can help them become clean, sober and help contribute to our community productively,” said Strom.

Part of the process will include input from those impacted by the abuse of drugs, Strom said, to best determine the task force’s direction.

“As a task force we’re going to need to be educated by the community to a certain degree so we are going to rely on the voices in our community – the parents and business owners – to come and tell us what they are seeing and we are going to try and do our best to address the needs and concerns of the community,” he said.

Strom said much of the first meeting dealt with how drug use has changed the community and ways to turn the growing trend around. The task force will meet monthly to develop and implement a strategy.