While we believe that everyone deserves to receive the help they need to end a substance abuse disorder, the idea of forcing people into rehabs in NJ seems like a gray area that requires more information and research. Although this proposed – and expected to pass – law was born from the opioid epidemic that’s hit New Jersey especially hard, it’s very likely to have an impact across all kinds of drug users.

This wouldn’t be the first state to have this kind of law on the books, nor would it be the first type of involuntary treatment forced upon residents of New Jersey (see also the Involuntary Outpatient Commitment program with court-ordered, albeit outpatient, mental health services). The thing is, though, that many people, including medical doctors, psychologists, and therapists, believe addiction to be a disease. When looking at addiction that way, that’s when it becomes questionable about whether or not people should be forced into receiving medical treatment for a disease even if they don’t want it.

 

As noted on New Jersey 101.5, “With the opioid abuse epidemic continuing to spiral out of control in New Jersey, a growing number of users are dying from overdoses. In 2016, the most recent year statistics are available, 2,221 Garden State residents died of drug related causes. The year before, the total was 1,587.

“In response, the Legislature is expected to soon approve a measure that would create an involuntary commitment system for those hooked on drugs. The measure would allow spouses, partners, relatives, friends and guardians to petition the courts to have someone forced into treatment even if they resist.

“New Jersey has an involuntary commitment law for people suffering from mental illness but drug addiction is not covered under that statute.” Click Here to Continue Reading

 

If you or a loved one is fighting an addiction and you want help from one of the best rehabs in NJ, contact us immediately to discuss your options before the courts take those options away.

Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD

Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MDDr. Jeffrey Berman is a psychiatrist in Teaneck, New Jersey and is affiliated with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. He received his medical degree from State University of New York Upstate Medical University and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He also speaks multiple languages, including French and Hebrew.

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