LST Alumni Foundation Breakfast 2017

Efforts to help drug addicts in St. Tammany Parish were discussed during the Leadership St. Tammany Alumni Foundation breakfast March 14 in Covington.

Covington Police Chief Tim Lentz and New Orleans Mission executive director David Bottner, both graduates of Leadership St. Tammany, discussed how their organizations have worked together to provide resources and hope for drug addicts in St. Tammany Parish.

 In St. Tammany Parish, Lentz said, a program called Operation Angel provides the framework for a drug addict to walk into any law enforcement office and ask for help with his or her addiction, with no questions asked and no arrests made. Instead, the addict, is escorted to the New Orleans Mission, where he or she can begin a free, comprehensive rehab program.

Since Operation Angel launched in St. Tammany Parish in May , Lentz said, more than 100 people have asked for help. Still, he said, the parish recorded at least 54 deaths by drug overdose in 2016, compared with five by homicide.

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