Social Justice News Nexus Fellow Adriana Cardona-Maguigad’s investigation into unregulated drug treatment centers and a “pipeline” of addicts sent from Puerto Rico to Chicago continues to spark action by officials and further reporting by other media outlets.
On June 11, the Univisión show Primer Impacto, a well-known Spanish-language program aired across the U.S., did its latest segment on the story. It noted that Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart has filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) regarding federal funding that has gone to the Puerto Rican agencies which run the programs that have connected Puerto Rican addicts with the centers in Chicago.
The program also features State Senator William Delgado, who has taken up the issue thanks to Adriana’s reporting and who is working with Puerto Rico Governor Alejandro Padilla’s office to connect Puerto Ricans in Chicago with legitimate drug treatment services.
On July 13th, WBEZ reported that Senator Dick Durbin urged an investigation of the pipeline of Puerto Rican addicts to Chicago. Durbin sent a letter to David Montoya, the inspector general for the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development on the issue.
Also on July 13th, Chicago Sun-Times shared that a group has taken up the issue of homeless drug addicts from Puerto Rico “sent here under false pretenses by police and government officials in their native Puerto Rico with promises of drug treatment programs that never materialized.” The group, Humble Hearts, heard the original WBEZ investigation on the radio and responded by going out to the streets sharing hot meals, hugs, and resources for rehab.