GLOUCESTER, Mass. (AP) — A Massachusetts police chief who developed a program that helps opioid addicts get help is earning praise from the Obama administration.

Gloucester Chief Leonard Campanello is one of ten “Champions of Change” scheduled to be honored at the White House on Friday.

Campanello initiated an Angel program last year that allows addicts to go to the police station and turn over their drugs and drug paraphernalia without being arrested. In return, they’ll be connected to a volunteer “angel” who will get them help.

Departments across the country have adopted similar programs, and hundreds of addicts have entered treatment.

Campanello says the initiative has helped reduce overdoses and crime.

A White House statement says Campanello has shown “compassionate leadership.”

More than 900 people were nominated.


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