Robert Jubinville of Milton, one of the state's eight elected governor's councilors, says it's time to stop throwing heroin addicts into prison.
"Heroin addiction, any addiction, is a disease, and needs to be treated, not punished," Jubinville says in a statement. "For years, we have been banging our heads throwing money into our corrections system to punish addicts. It hasn't worked. Let's try something different. ... Inmates simply do not receive adequate drug rehabilitation and are at a higher risk of using when they are released, making the rate of recidivism high."
Jubinville added he also wants the state to take over all the local methadone clinics - and expand the availability of the drug to every courthouse in the state. He applauded Gloucester's decision to not bring criminal charges against addicts who go to police to seek help, but said that not only should be expanded statewide but should also be applied to addicts who do not approach police.
Governor's councilors, who serve on a body originally created to act as a check on colonial governors, normally receive little public attention as they sign off on the state's bills and vote on the governor's judicial appointments and parole recommendations.