In 2016, we launched a new initiative specifically for seniors to raise awareness about the risks and impacts of the opioid crisis.
Approximately 34,000 grandparents in Massachusetts are raising grandchildren. According to a survey conducted by the Commission on the Status of Grandparents Raising Children, 80 percent of these cases are because of opioid use or the opioid-related death of a son or daughter.
The Grandparent Program provides an essential understanding of the opioid epidemic, educating seniors on the origin of the problem and how it has intensified over time. The program also provides seniors with tips on how to identify signs of a substance use disorder in the family, recognizing that children and grandchildren may not only be in need of help, but may also be stealing from seniors to support an addiction. In addition, the program educates seniors on how to safeguard medication from theft and how to properly dispose of unused or expired medication.