South Bend's City Council will need to decide whether to allow a Sober Living Facility to open along Jefferson Boulevard. A vote
scheduled for Monday has been delayed.
Bill Long has lived in Walnut Grove more than a decade and plans to stay. He was angry when he found out what could be moving in across the street.
“I was outraged. I mean people need a second chance but you don’t put drug dealers or drug addicts right across the street from a bunch of old people,” says Long.
The property at 2610 E. Jefferson Boulevard is up for rezoning. Right now it is a chiropractor’s office. Choices Recovery -- an inpatient drug and alcohol treatment program -- wants to open a Sober Living Facility there.
“There are not enough facilities in Indiana. Not even close. We are not even scratching the surface at the number of people we need to help,” says Brandon Adolf, the executive director at Choices Recovery.
Right now clients at Choices go voluntarily and stay about 45 days. They get clean and complete treatment and are then they are sent back into the community. The new Sober Living Facility would be a place to help them get back on their feet.
“It is kind of like having a lifeguard at the pool before you throw them in,” says Adolf, “there is someone there to hold them accountable and supervise instead of just returning home to no supervision.”
According to Adolf, the Sober Living Facility would house about 20 people. They would be drug tested and breathalyzed regularly, required to do counseling and take 3 hours of classes a day. There would be two security guards on duty at all times and a curfew.
“What this sober living is allowing is for us to continue the evidence based programming, results based program for our clients,” says Alicia Brown the Outreach Coordinator for US Addiction Services, which runs Choices.
Still, neighbors have concerns about safety. Long told us some residents have already lost property to burglaries and theft. Long and the rest of the Walnut Grove Board of Directors will be keeping a close watch on this plan.
“I would hate to see anything go wrong with this place. This is my home until I turn 105,” says Long.
Choices Leaders say they are making themselves available to the public. People who have questions or concerns can call Alicia Brown at 574-401-5757.
The vote has been postponed until at least February 25th.