August 4, 2009

Deaths of homeless people spur opening of involuntary detox center

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Half of the eight deaths of homeless people in Anchorage over the past few months were alcohol-related, prompting the city to open an involuntary alcohol-treatment facility, according to the Associated Press. The center wants to provide beds for people to sober up and stay longer if they need to, and help them work on long-term treatment. Involuntary commitment can only occur if a person is incapacitated or has threatened violence, and if a family member or doctor petitions for it. This procedure isn’t new, but has been held up by lack of space at other detox centers throughout the area.

– Emily Linroth

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