What a morning. Spent almost two hours on the show this morning talking with the founder and leaders of the Center for Great Expectations. It’s a Jersey based group focused on helping homeless women with substance addictions. Peg Wright founded the organization in 1998 based on inspiration she received from a Catholic nun. Dr. Debbie Ruisard is the clinical director for the center and both women were with me at New Jersey 101.5 this morning. Many of the women that they have been treating recently have been caught up in the serious heroin epidemic which has been gripping the nation and New Jersey in particular in recent years.
Heroin death-rate in New Jersey per 100,000 — more than three times the national average
Had a great conversation with New Jersey Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno this morning during her visit to NJ 101.5. She had originally been scheduled to come on my show as she’s done several times before, to discuss the NJ job market and the jobs that have been created over the past year in the private sector. The challenge was that I had started the morning off talking about heroin in Jersey, specifically reacting to Governor Christie’s comments yesterday about how many lives Narcan has saved over the past year and a half. Anytime you bring up addiction, specifically the growing heroin epidemic, the phones get flooded with calls from concerned parents, former addicts and friends of people who have fallen victim to the drug. Gotta give the LG credit, she rolled with the new topic immediately and was helpful to several callers calling about the red tape at our state clinics preventing some people from getting the help they need when they need it. Obviously we weren’t going to solve the heroin problem in a couple hours on the radio but as she pointed out, keeping the conversation going is critical as we work toward solutions.