The City of Providence wants to turn its fire departments into sanctuaries for people caught in the opioid epidemic. Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza made the announcement Monday.
Elorza said all 12 of the city’s fire stations will open their doors to people with substance abuse disorders. The fire stations will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week to help people living with addiction who want to find treatment and recovery services.
The city is calling the program PVD Safe Stations. City officials say it grew out of a partnership with state health officials and the Providence Center, a nonprofit community mental health agency.
State health data shows that more than one in four overdose deaths last year occurred in Providence.
PVD Safe Stations is modeled on a program launched last year in Manchester, New Hampshire.