Opioids land more women behind bars

Opioids land more women behind bars

This lone county jail in a remote corner of Appalachia offers an agonizing glimpse into how the tidal wave of opioids and methamphetamines has ravaged America. Here and in countless other places, addiction is driving skyrocketing rates of incarcerated women, tearing apart families while squeezing communities that lack money, treatment programs and permanent solutions to close the revolving door. More than a decade ago, there were rarely more than 10 women in the Campbell County Jail in northeast Tennessee. Now the population is routinely around 60. Most who end up here have followed a similar path: they’re arrested on a drug-related charge and confined to a cell 23 hours a day. Many of their bunkmates also are addicts. They receive no counseling. Then weeks, months or years later, they’re released into the same community where friends – and in some cases, family – are using drugs. Soon they are again, too. And the cycle begins anew: Another arrest, another booking photo, another pink uniform and off to a cell to simmer in regret and despair.
— By David Goldman/Associated Press


Jessica Morgan, high on methamphetamines and the opioid pain medication Opana, sits in a holding cell after being booked for drug possession at the Campbell County Jail in Jacksboro, Tenn. April 23, 2018.
(David Goldman/Associated Press)

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