I have the pleasure of working with opiate addicted people in a clinic every week. They come from all walks of life. They got there in ways most of us can’t imagine. If you want to help these people, and therefore, help society you must be open to dealing with the problem differently. Just say “no” is bullshit. Help them avoid spreading infections (HIV and Hepatitis) with clean needles and you help society by avoiding the long-term costs of treatment down the road. Bring them into a safe injection zones and you can introduce them to counselors and therapists who can point those ready to take the frightening road into treatment. Stop arresting these people for drug related offenses. The costs to society, their families and the individuals are without any benefit.
We don’t arrest diabetics when they eat a doughnut. Why arrest an addict for using drugs?