Nonprofit Collaboration of the Year Finalist
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Opioid and alcohol addiction have taken a toll on many Wisconsinites and their loved ones. Many who are addicted are also incarcerated.
Mary Simon has taken an active approach to fighting addiction in Washington County.
Simon, executive director of Elevate, an organization that offers services for those affected by addiction, partnered with Washington County’s law enforcement, its judicial system, and its health and human services department to form the Treatment Alternatives and Diversion Program.
Through TAD, first-time drug and OWI offenders receive treatment for their addiction and employment assistance, rather than jail time. Besides encouraging sobriety among its graduates and offering resources to their families, the TAD program is economical. Fewer individuals incarcerated places less of a financial burden on courts, law enforcement and human service agencies.
“TAD is a compassionate, yet cost-effective, approach to the nightmare that is substance abuse,” said Juli Benedum, senior corporate attorney for West Bend Mutual Insurance Co. and Elevate board member.