I’ve had a lot to say on the topic in the past. To sum up my view, context is key. A program like this can be an expression of despair, fear and/or contempt, or it can be a way to engage addicts and try to keep them healthier until the enter recovery.
Recovery is the key. I’d pose the following questions:
- Does treatment on demand exist? If not, does the facility consider it their responsibility to advocate for treatment on demand?
- Does the program view recovery as the ultimate goal?
- Does the facility believe that it’s clients can achieve recovery?
- Are they capable of offering hope for recovery to their clients and the community?
- Does the program view drug use by addicts as a life style choice, or as a symptom of the treatable illness of addiction?
- Does the program represent the best use of scarce resources available to help addicts?
San Francisco does have a policy of treatment on demand, but it has never been anywhere near adequately funded.