Oak Park

Oak Park, Illinois, Drug Abuse Issues and Rehabilitation Offered Close By and Readily Available

Oak Park is a mid-sized neighborhood of the greater Chicago Metropolitan area. Standing nine miles west of downtown Chicago, Oak Park has a population of about 50,000. Oak Park is one of the oldest neighborhoods in the Chicago area, and is predominantly populated by white, middle-class adults. The average income in Oak Park is somewhat higher than the Illinois state average, although the neighborhood has seen a significant rise in unemployment, gang-related crime and violence, and fatal accidents in the last five years.

Probably one of the more significant topics of discussion in Oak Park is the gang violence and crime issues mentioned above. In the last ten years gangs were seen to slowly begin to outgrow the city of Chicago’s city limits, and then began to spread carefully outwards into, and then permeate the surroundings of, other neighborhoods, counties, and suburbs. Even though Oak Park stands as an older neighborhood with predominantly middle class citizens, this did not stop three gangs known as the Four Corner Hustlers, the Black Souls, and the Conservative Vice Lords from stepping in and asserting control over this quadrant of the Chicago Metropolitan area. While Oak Park is home to some of the most densely populated concentrations of professional nurses, computer programmers, technicians, and business professionals, Oak Park has also become a recent source of crime and drug dealing, use, abuse, and addiction.

Oak Park Inpatient Residential Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Centers

To combat the recent trend in crime and gang activity in Oak Park, the village of Oak Park in collaboration with the City of Chicago City Counsel convened to set up a government operated, funded and run inpatient, residential treatment and rehabilitation center. Working together with the Salvation Army, a program called Harbor Light was erected. Being the only center in the area, Harbor Light usually has to give local addicts a 6-8 week waiting period before a bed in the center can be offered them. For the vast majority of drug and alcohol addicts, this far too long to wait to receive treatment and help with a serious addiction problem. Harbor Light offers outpatient treatment, residential care, short-term residential care, long-term residential care, intensive outpatient treatment, and regular outpatient treatment. Unfortunately, as it is a government run center, most addicts are not allowed to stay longer than 28 days, and there is no aftercare program. Because of the lack of a good aftercare program, the relapse rate in Oak Park is tremendously high, and the gang presence and the readily available drugs on many street corners make maintaining sobriety very difficult for most addicted persons.

Because no profoundly successful inpatient rehabilitation centers exist in Oak Park, many addicted citizens travel outside of the Chicago area entirely to achieve full, total, and complete sobriety at a privately owned and operated, accredited, reputable inpatient drug and alcohol rehabilitation center.