A proposed Methadone clinic in Saint Mary’s has sparked controversy among some of its residents. Zac Kaye has more on how a similar clinic has worked in Clearfield.
Saint Marys residents voiced their concerns about a Mobile Methadone clinic at a public meeting last week making claims that crime has gone up in Clearfield since the opening of the Methadone Clinic there.
I talked with two Clearfield County officials who say they haven’t seen a negative impact on the community from the clinic.
Acadia Healthcare owns the Clearfield Comprehensive Treatment Center and are the ones proposing the mobile Methadone Clinic in Saint Mary’s.
At the public hearing last week, representatives from Acadia voiced their reasoning for why the clinic would be beneficial and multiple residents from Saint Mary’s talked about why it wouldn’t be.
The treatment center in Clearfield has been open for more than fifteen years. County Commissioners Dave Glass and Tim Winters recognize that there might be a negative perception that surrounds having a Methadone Clinic in the area.
Winters talks about how the county doesn’t own the facility, but they are glad that it’s there for anyone who wants to try and better themselves.
“This is not a county owned facility, it’s not a county facilitated facility, but we have to do what we can to facilitate treatment here and rural Pennsylvania is facing the drug problem just the same as everywhere else in our country and we can’t pretend we’re not and we have to do what we can to facilitate treatment programs.”
Acadia says they have seen these Mobile Methadone Clinics, like the one that would be in Saint Marys, be a success in other locations.
Glass says it takes a lot for someone battling addiction to seek help, and that in Clearfield County, they want to make sure those people have a place to go.
“I would hope that our citizens can support those who are going out of their way to seek treatment. I would encourage people to learn about what’s actually happening here and realize that it’s not making the drug problem worse.”
Saint Mary’s city council still has about forty days to make a final decision on the clinic.