Statement from Julie Burns, President & CEO of RIZE Massachusetts

October 19, 2021


RIZE Massachusetts, an independent nonprofit foundation working to end the opioid epidemic in Massachusetts, welcomes the City of Boston’s action on the humanitarian crisis that has unfolded at the area known as Mass. and Cass.  City leadership is crucial to solving this three-headed crisis involving addiction, mental health and housing.  We also need other communities and the state to work collaboratively toward a solution.  All ideas should be on the table, but they must not overlook a critical element: the human beings who need help.  There is an urgent need for evidence-based, clinically appropriate shelter with daytime recovery supports.  No plan can succeed without that.  A bed, without the appropriate services, is simply a bed, and that will not support people on the pathway to recovery.  Public and private organizations and policymakers must build unity around finding solutions to end the overdose crisis, and RIZE stands ready to support the treatment and recovery providers network and government officials to address gaps in treatment options.