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Gianforte visits NEXUS, joins conversation on addiction

February 27, 2018
In The News

“Don’t give up hope.”

That’s the message U.S. Representative Greg Gianforte (R-Mont.) gives children he meets around the state. That’s what he told the 7th-12th grade students at Harlowton earlier this week.

And, on Thursday morning, Gianforte shared this same message with the Fergus County Sheriff’s Department, Fergus County Commissioner Ross Butcher, Fergus County Attorney Kent Sipe and Nexus Administrator Rick Barman in a conference room at the Nexus treatment complex.

But it’s easier said than done, as methamphetamine, prescription drugs, synthetic drugs, opiates and more plague the community.

It’s disheartening, Sheriff Troy Eades said, and tremendously frustrating.

“We’ve got other things we can do than chase drug addicts around,” Eades said.

Eades and Undersheriff Rick Vaughn see a lot of the same perpetrators again and again. It can be tiring, trying, but they have a job to do, and they can’t do it alone.

That’s what the conversation was about Thursday. Gianforte was not there to speak; he was there to listen. He wanted to hear thoughts on addiction and encouraged those in attendance to keep the conversation going.

Others at the table agreed.

“As a society, as a community, we need to break the cycle of addiction,” Eades said.

With programs such as Together Our Recovery Center Heals and Young People in Recovery, Barman said Lewistown is stepping in the right direction.

“Groups are developing with the clear target in mind of helping people get back on their feet,” he said.

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As the conversation continued, there were more questions than answers, but one message was clear.

“We have to come together as a community to solve this problem,” Gianforte said.

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