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Martch 1, 2024: Issue 5

Offering hope and help to those impacted by opioid misuse in

Franklin County and the North Quabbin Region.


See what's happening at OTF this month.


Explore OTF's COVID-19 Resource Guide.


Hope is here. Get help.

Resources for Franklin County and the North Quabbin Region. Click here.


Resources and upcoming events in the North Quabbin Region. Click here.


Find local resources in this issue.

Emergency Services Resources for Unhoused Individuals


Click here for resources.

Grayken Center for Addiction

Training & Technical Assistance

Click here to view and/or register for trainings.

GCC Community Engagement and Workshop Events

Click here to view and/or register for trainings.

"It is not fair to ask of others what you are not willing to do yourself."

~Eleanor Roosevelt

2 am Sunday, March 10th


Watch here: The ‘fourth wave’ of the overdose crisis

Good morning,

As the opioid epidemic continues to evolve, we wanted to share an excerpt from the latest research that documents the "fourth wave of the overdose crisis." This research confirms what we have been experiencing in our rural region and has implications for how we conduct our work. One can review the excerpt here as well, courtesy of EurekaAlert! Science News Releases. (Edited for clarity.)

"New research published in the scientific journal Addiction has found that the proportion of US overdose deaths involving both fentanyl and stimulants has increased more than 50-fold since 2010, from 0.6% (235 deaths) in 2010 to 32.3% (34,429 deaths) in 2021. By 2021, stimulants (such as cocaine and methamphetamine) had become the most common drug class found in fentanyl-involved overdoses in every US state. This rise in fentanyl and stimulant fatalities constitutes the ‘fourth wave’ in the US’s long-running opioid overdose crisis –the death toll of which continues to rise precipitously. 

“We’re now seeing that the use of fentanyl together with stimulants is rapidly becoming the dominant force in the US overdose crisis,” says lead author Dr. Joseph Friedman of the University of California, Los Angeles. “Fentanyl has ushered in a polysubstance overdose crisis, meaning that people are mixing fentanyl with other drugs, like stimulants, but also countless other synthetic substances. This poses many health risks and new challenges for healthcare providers. We have data and medical expertise about treating opioid use disorders, but comparatively little experience with the combination of opioids and stimulants together, or opioids mixed with other drugs. This makes it hard to stabilize people medically who are withdrawing from polysubstance use.”

People consuming multiple substances may also be at increased risk of overdose, and many substances being mixed with fentanyl are not responsive to naloxone, the antidote to an opioid overdose. 

The authors also found that fentanyl and stimulant overdose deaths disproportionately affect racial/ethnic minority communities in the US, including Black and African American people and Native American people. For instance, in 2021, the prevalence of stimulant involvement in fentanyl overdose deaths was 73% among 65 to 74-year-old Non-Hispanic Black or African American women living in the western US and 69% among 55 to 65-year-old Black or African American men living in the same area. The rate among the general US population in 2021 was 49%.

There are also geographical patterns to fentanyl/stimulant use. In the northeast US, fentanyl tends to be combined with cocaine; in the southern and western US, it appears most commonly with methamphetamine. 

Friedman says, “We suspect this pattern reflects the rising availability of, and preference for, low-cost, high-purity methamphetamine throughout the US, and the fact that the Northeast has a well-entrenched pattern of illicit cocaine use that has so far resisted the complete takeover by methamphetamine seen elsewhere in the country.”

The analysis illustrates how the US opioid crisis began with an increase in deaths from prescription opioids (wave 1) in the early 2000s and heroin (wave 2) in 2010. Around 2013, an increase in fentanyl overdoses signaled the third wave. The fourth wave – fentanyl overdoses with stimulants – began in 2015 and continues to grow."

References: This paper is Open Access on the Wiley Online Library here. To speak with authors Dr. Joseph Friedman and Dr. Chelsea Shover, please contact them at the University of California, Los Angeles by email (joseph.robert.friedman@gmail.comCLShover@mednet.ucla.edu).

Join us as we continue to address the impact of opioid misuse in our rural region!


Debra McLaughlin, Coordinator,

Opioid Task Force of Franklin County and the North Quabbin Region

Visit SAMHSA's website for support and resources

OTF Members in the News

"Sending Sustenance" ~ Greenfield Recorder (2/19/2024)

" United Way of the Franklin & Hampshire Region Executive Director Geoff Naunheim carries donations for the 20th annual Supper for Six food drive with volunteers James Bresciano, 9, and Gabriel Heineman, 10, both of Greenfield, to the Davis Street offices in Greenfield on Thursday.

Thanks to those who contributed, 403 local families will receive help putting food on the dinner table over February school vacation week. This includes 350 bags collected, plus $2,666 in monetary donations that will feed another 53 families.

United Way partner agencies that will distribute the food to families are: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Western Mass, Community Action’s Center for Self-Reliance Food Pantry, the Franklin County Community Meals Program, the Mary Lyon Foundation, Montague Catholic Social Ministries, Greenfield’s Salvation Army and The United Arc.

Volunteer Denise Mason carries donations for the 20th annual Supper for Six food drive to the United Way’s offices.

Employee Elsa Kieffer piles donations for the 20th annual Supper for Six food drive into the United Way’s offices.

(Staff Photo/Paul Franz)

"Despite Branch Closure, Hillside Pizza Sees Record-Breaking Year" ~Greenfield Recorder (2/23/2024)

"The return of the Super Bowl marked a record-breaking year in sales and fundraising efforts for Hillside Pizza, despite closing the doors at its 15-year-old Hadley location.

With employee shortages and rising supply costs, many restaurants have struggled to navigate the post-pandemic labor markets, as Amy White, co-owner and co-founder of Hillside Pizza, described. Ongoing construction on Route 9 and staffing issues “made it challenging [to keep the Hadley branch] and so we just consolidated,” White said.

But closing one storefront has not negatively impacted or forced owners Amy and Craig White to change any other aspect of their business at the other two branches in Bernardston and South Deerfield. Any employee from the Hadley branch that wanted to stay on board was transferred to South Deerfield, and White said she’s seen their loyal customer base from Hadley also making the switch over.

Hillside Pizza has also been able to continue the programs it runs alongside its storefront businesses, such as school fundraising efforts and the philanthropic community meals program through the Greenfield Salvation Army.

Since the start of the pandemic in 2020, Amy and Craig White have donated catered meals each week to support residents who have been negatively impacted by the pandemic. They recently hit a milestone of 25,000 meals donated. “That [number] was never in our sights at the beginning,” White said. “We’re providing dignity … as well as just food itself, and that’s really important to us.”

White mentioned a recently launched fundraising campaign through Fundly to help continue the weekly tradition of donated meals, which can cost an average of $3 per plate. The campaign can be viewed at here.

“We can’t do it alone, and so we really need help to run the race,” which is the mission of the campaign, White said.

Founded in 2001, Hillside Pizza began as a food catering business through which kids could raise money for their schools. After 23 years, Hillside Pizza has retained this aspect of its business, and had its most successful fundraising year with the conclusion of the 2024 Super Bowl.

(Staff Photo/Paul Franz)

Local Representation at the 5th Annual NIH HEAL Initiative Scientific Meeting

Ed Hayes and Liz Evans were invited plenary speakers at the 5th Annual NIH HEAL Initiative Scientific Meeting in Bethesda on February 7-8, 2024, where they shared insights from the Massachusetts Justice Community Opioid Innovation Network (MassJCOIN) on how to build sustainable research-practice relationships.
Photo: from left
Tisha Wiley, PhD, Chief, Services Research Branch, NIH National Institute on Drug Abuse
Ed Hayes, Assistant Superintendent, Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, Greenfield, MA
Liz Evans, PhD, Professor, Department of Health Promotion & Policy, UMass Amherst
Michele Staton, PhD, Professor, University of Kentucky
Katie Marks, PhD, Commissioner, Kentucky Department for Behavioral Health


Virtual: Treatment & Recovery Committee

March 1, 2024

10:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Zoom details here.

CANCELED: Virtual: Harm Reduction Workgroup

March 6, 2024

11:00 AM - 12:00 Noon

Zoom details here.

Virtual: Healthcare Solutions Committee

March 8, 2024

10:00 AM - 11:30 Noon

Zoom details here.

Hybrid: Sexual Exploitation & Trafficking Workgroup

March 11, 2024

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Franklin County Reentry Center

106 Main Street, Greenfield

Zoom details here.

Virtual: Education & Prevention Committee

March 12, 2024

9:30 AM - 11:00 AM

Zoom details here.

Virtual: Emergency Services for Unhoused Individuals Task Force

March 18, 2024

9:30 AM - 10:30 AM

Zoom details here.

Hybrid: Public Safety & Justice Committee

April 1, 2024

1:00 - 2:00 PM

Franklin County Reentry Center

106 Main Street, Greenfield

Zoom details here.

Virtual: CAM Workgroup

April 9, 2024

11:00 am - 12:00 pm

Zoom details here.

Virtual: Methadone Workgroup

April 11, 2024

3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

Zoom details here.

Virtual: Housing & Workforce Development Committee

April 12, 2024

10:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Zoom details here.

Consult our website or Facebook Page for updates. Please email us with any questions!


CONNECT: Post-Opioid Overdose Outreach Services

Support & Resources After the HEALing Communities Study

Learn more at HealTogetherMA.org

Updated Emergency Resources for
Unhoused Individuals
Time Sensitive Announcements

February 1 - March 28 Thursdays Bilingual Music & Movement

March 1 (Start Date) PMP CPR + First Aid 21-Day Challenge

March 1 North Quabbin Seasonal Gathering Winter Edition

March 1 Open Mic Night

March 2 Adult Dodgeball Tournament

March 2 Stone Soup Cafe Menu

March 2 Metalworking Workshop

March 3 The Deerfield Massacre in Myth and Memory

March 4 VOC STEM St. Patrick's Day LEGO Challenge Cards

March 4 & March 11 Maker Space Mondays

March 7 Positive Parents & Terrific Teachers

March 8 Drop In and Draw!

March 9 Old School Dodgeball Tournament

March 9 Sisters in Crime: Making A Mystery

March 9 Meet Boulder! at the New Salem Public Library

March 9 Winter At The Fair

March 10 Erving Family PlayTime

March 10 Cultivating a Peaceful Table: Building Positive Food Relationships

March 11 Zen Peacemaker Core Trainings

March 14 PJ Storytime

March 15 Kidleidoscope Story Hour Collaboration

March 15 Rec the Night Building Big

March 16 Greenfield Winter Farmers Market

March 18 Positive Solutions for Families

March 18 Financial Literacy Workshop

(8 Week Course on Mondays)

March 21 Heart Health Screenings

March 22 Rooted in Resilience

March 23 MPL Artists' Reception

March 27 - June 20 Weekly Wednesday Nurturing Father's Program

March 28 Virtual Overdose Prevention & Narcan Training

Register Here

March 30 Erving Recreation's Annual Egg Hunt

March 30 Sun on the Muddy Poems & Photographs

April 1 - June 22 Free English Class for Immigrants and Refugees

April 2 Greenfield Public Library Presents Jarrett Krosoczka

April 6 - May 25 *Saturdays* Postpartum Therapeutic Support Group

April 16-18 Porter Family Farm April Vacation 2024


Improving Housing to Improve Health News

Re-Entry Foundational Manufacturing Program

March Franklin County Reentry Center Calendar

March Programs - Great Falls Discovery Center

March Children's Programs at Greenfield Public Library

March Montague Public Library Programs

March LifePath Healthy Living 2024 Winter Workshops

March Union 28 Community Network for Children Program Calendar

2024 Seeds of Solidarity Calendar of Events

SNAP Application Assistance
Always Open! Community Labyrinth in Greenfield
RECOVER Project Groups At a Glance
Weekdays All Recovery Meeting at
The RECOVER Project


The Community Closet at The Franklin County Reentry Center

Monday - Friday
Movement Group with North Quabbin Recovery Center Peer Leaders
Mondays North Quabbin Patch Parents' Council
Mondays Art Guild Meetings
Mondays Advanced Manufacturing Info Sessions
Monday Drug Court Alumni Group - North Quabbin
Second Mondays of the Month - North Quabbin B.R.A.V.E. Task Force Meetings
Mondays Alternatives to Suicide Group

2nd Mondays

Greenfield Healing Clinic

2nd and 4th Mondays
Parenting Together at the Brick House
Mondays and Wednesdays
Restless, Irritable, and Discontent: Your Brain in Recovery

Peer-Led Grief and Loss Circle
First Tuesday - Dads' Group at Valuing Our Children
Tuesday Tea Time & Community Resource Drop-In
Tuesdays North Quabbin Recovery Center Coffee Hour
Tuesdays Greenfield Suicide Loss Group

First Tuesday - P.A.R.T. Task Force

Tuesdays Drop-In Knitting & Sewing Sessions
2nd Tuesdays New Member Orientation at the RECOVER Project

Tuesday Men's Anger Management Group

Wednesday Women's Anger Management Group

Wednesdays - Wendell Library Playgroup with Sylvia

Wednesdays - Playgroup at the Leverett Library with Gillian

Wednesdays - Housing Navigator Sessions at the Franklin County Reentry Center
Wednesdays HEROES Study Hub at GCC
Wednesdays Men's Support Group:
Keep Moving Forward

Last Wednesday of the Month Office Hours With An Att

First & Third Thursdays Parent Support Group
Thursdays Recovery Support Group Meetings at the Franklin County Reentry Center
Thursdays Coffee Hour at the Brick House
Thursdays Beyond Trauma Group in Spanish
Second Thursdays Every Month, Peer Grief Support

First Friday of Every Month: Open Mic at the RP

Every First & Third Friday - Grandparents & Kinship Support Group
Every Third Friday: Karaoke at The RECOVER Project
Last Friday of the Month: Gardening in Recovery
Homeshare Program with LifePath
Act Now to Stay Covered with MassHealth
DIAL/SELF AmeriCorps Opportunity at
Montague Catholic Social Ministries
CHCFC OBAT Same Day & Tele-Health Appointment Information
Free English Classes
Free Meals and Essentials
Saints James and Andrews Parish Hall
Come Cook with Franklin County
Community Meals Program
A Residential Program of Behavioral Health Network
Orange Food Pantry Seeking Non-Food Donations
The Franklin County Community Meals Program seeking non-food donations for its Orange Food Pantry

When people think of donating to our agency and food pantry, they often think of food- however, that's easier for us to obtain with local partnerships with farms and retailers. What we struggle to keep stocked are hygienic & household products, such as:

  • Adult pull-ups size Medium, Large, & XL
  • Menstrual products
  • Bath products- bath wash or bar soap, shampoo, conditioner
  • Deodorant
  • Floss
  • Mouthwash
  • Toothpaste (we have plenty of toothbrushes currently!)
  • Paper Towels
  • Toilet Paper
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Dish Soap
  • Household cleaners- Windex, multi-surface, floor cleaner, etc.

Dozen-sized egg cartons for repackaging the hundreds of eggs we receive weekly from retailers are also needed.

Please share this list amongst your networks! Donations can be dropped off at 324 Wells Street (the Franklin County Community Distribution Center) at our office, or if donating a large amount, drop-off can be coordinated via donate@fccmp.org. (Image credit: Pixabay)
Family Self-Sufficiency Program Available
Eviction Self-Help Booklets Available in Multiple Languages

MLRI has recently updated and translated some of our self-help booklets for unrepresented tenants facing eviction. While we still recommend tenants facing eviction seek legal help, we know resources are limited and many tenants have to represent themselves. We hope these booklets can be helpful to pro se tenants and their advocates.

You can see the full list of booklets below, or at MassLegalHelp. The booklets can help tenants prepare for court, outline their legal claims, and file court forms. There is also a booklet to help public housing tenants navigate the Grievance process.

Please reach out if you have any questions about the booklets and how they can be used.

What steps to take before going to court and what to bring to court.

An easy-to-use checklist that tells you what conditions violate the State Sanitary Code. You can also use the free self-help guided interview, MADE: Up To Code.

The Answer is a court form that tenants facing evictions can file with the court to outline your legal claims and tell the court your side of the story. You can also use Greater Boston Legal Services’ free self-help guided interview, MADE

How to ask the court to accept your Answer and Discovery forms late.  You can also use Greater Boston Legal Services’ free self-help guided interview, MADE.

A form with instructions for tenants facing eviction to get information to prepare for their trial.

A form with instructions for tenants in foreclosed properties to get information to prepare their case. 

A form you can file to transfer your eviction case from a District Court to a Housing Court.

How to get a new court date if you missed your court date.

If you lost your eviction trial and think you have a good case, you may appeal. This document tells you which Appeal form to use.

How to file an appeal from a case in Housing Court.

How to file an appeal from a case in District Court.

How to get time to stay in your home if you lost your case.

How to ask the court to pay for court costs. 

How to think through the terms you want in an agreement. Includes a worksheet and stipulation forms to use when you go to court. Read this booklet as webpages and watch the videos!

How to correct errors on your online court records. The Booklet includes the court form you can save to your computer, fill out, save again and print when ready.

A booklet for tenants in Mass. about the grievance process, including worksheets to help you prepare for a grievance hearing.

Update! Greenfield CSC New Hybrid Operations Change
The Greenfield Court Service Center is located at 43 Hope St., 1st Floor, Greenfield, MA.

They offer in-person services on Tuesdays & Thursdays, ONLY, from 8:30 am-1 pm, and 2 pm-4 pm. Remote services (email, phone, Zoom) are available on Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays.

For an intake, contact the Virtual Court Service Center, Mon. thru Fri. 9 am-12 pm by telephone: 1-646-828-7666, press #, #, then enter meeting ID: 161 526 1140 or by video: www.zoomgov.com/j/1615261140.

Opioid Task Force of Franklin County and the North Quabbin Region www.opioidtaskforce.org
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