Jennifer Flory of Illinois thought she was getting her daughter, Alison, the help she needed when she sent Alison to what had been advertised as a home for addiction treatment in South Florida. Sadly, however, Alison died from a drug overdose, smoking crack cocaine laced with an opiate. Jennifer learned in the most tragic way possible that she had been deceived into thinking that such places would help her daughter.
Perhaps predictably, the dramatic rise in opiate and other drug abuse has spawned an industry of so-called “drug treatment” centers and “sober homes”, often located in warm, sunny and inviting Florida. Many have aggressive recruiters, seemingly thorough and informative websites, and TV commercials. The idea is that the addict is sent to live in one of these facilities, where, caring loved ones are lead to believe, the addict is getting virtually round-the-clock attention and professional care.
But, while there are indeed proven and effective facilities in this industry, many are scams, set up to drain the insurance policies of terrified parents who will do anything to help their child through his drug problem. These unscrupulous places frequently offer very little support or structure-or even professional treatment-for the addict; some even allow the addict they are supposed to be treating to continue to abuse drugs.