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Wyckoff, Franklin Lakes, Oakland Officials Unite To Fight Drug Abuse

Wyckoff Mayor Kevin Rooney announces the partnership among Wyckoff, Franklin Lakes, and Oakland.
Wyckoff Mayor Kevin Rooney announces the partnership among Wyckoff, Franklin Lakes, and Oakland. Photo Credit: Kevin Rooney

WYCKOFF, N.J. — Wyckoff, Oakland and Franklin Lakes officials announced have united to fight illicit drug use through an amnesty and education program.

Spearheaded by Wyckoff Mayor Kevin Rooney, the effort includes police departments, municipal officials, schools superintendents and drug abuse prevention professionals.Their targets: heroin and synthetic marijuana use.

"What's been done in New Jersey hasn't been working," Rooney said. "Children of people we work with are being affected and dying. It's not something you read about or see on TV. These are realities."

As part of the program, police in all three towns won't make any arrests when responding to parents' reports of illicit drug use.

Instead, drugs will be confiscated and families will be connected to social workers and other experts offering free services that will ultimately keep drug users "on the straight and narrow," Rooney said.

"There have been more drug overdoses in the past three weeks than ever," said Rooney, citing two Narcan saves and the death of a 30-year-old Franklin Lakes resident this month.

"My DPW finds syringes under overpasses all the time," he added. "It's becoming more and more real and we need to address the problem at a user level."

Rooney wants the partnership to be a model program that could be available at the state level.

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