The city of Yonkers is in Westchester County, New York. Though it is not part of New York City, many residents have a strong connection to the city and may commute there to work each day. There are an estimated 196,459 residents in Yonkers, and a median income base of $57,000. Since 2012, Mike Spano has served as mayor. Yonkers is considered a moderately safe community; according to Neighborhood Scout, Yonkers has a rating of 52 out of 100 (with 100 being the safest).

Drug Use Issues in Westchester County

There is limited data available on the state of drug use in Yonkers. Looking to Westchester County, there is information available from the Westchester County District Attorney’s Annual Report (2010). The report reviewed facets of the illegal drug trade within the county.

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The following facts illuminate the reality of drug-involved crimes in Westchester County:

  • In 2010, there were a total of 1,000 felony arrests that involved illicit drugs. Illicit drugs can include lawful prescription medications that have been diverted to the street.
  • In the same year, there were 250 felony drug convictions, and the county seized $531,670 in drug money.
  • Through a coordination of law enforcements efforts, in 2010, there were sweeps in Yonkers and other cities that resulted in 20 felony drug convictions. These sweeps were particularly tailored to get prescription opioid medications off the street, including Percocet, Roxicet, Vicodin, and oxycodone.
  • In 2010, 45 narcotics arrests yielded the following: more than seven pounds of powder cocaine, 23 pounds of heroin, one pound of Percocet and oxycodone pills, and 850 ecstasy tablets.
  • Different cities, including Yonkers, participate in drug courts. Defendants in drug-related cases who are experiencing substance abuse have the opportunity to be referred to treatment instead of being incarcerated. In 2010, more than 150 criminal defendants in Westchester participated in a drug court programs and were referred to drug treatment.
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Much of the news coverage related to Westchester and drug use involves concerns about drugs in schools. According to an article published in Westchester Magazine, tweens and teenagers are using prescription drugs for scholastic improvement, weight loss, or just to tune out. It appears that tweens, teens, and young adults have access to prescription medications, such as Adderall (usually prescribed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder), opioid medications (such as oxycodone) and sedatives (such as Xanax). Often, students get these drugs from a parent’s medicine cabinet and consume them in addiction to sharing them with fellow students.

Coping with stress is reportedly a main reason students start to abuse prescription drugs. It is well documented across the US that students are experiencing acute pressure to succeed on exams. According to one study, in 2008, 79 percent of polled high school kids said they felt pressure to score high on exams, up from 62 percent in 2001. At present, the best advice for students who are abusing prescription or other drugs is to speak with a professional. There are many levels of recovery available, from starting counseling to entering a structured rehab program.

Connecting with Drug Rehab Care in Yonkers

The Westchester County Government provides a directory of rehab facilities. A review of the listed outpatient treatment programs shows that there are at least eight listed in Yonkers and more in surrounding areas. The county also provides information on inpatient treatment programs. Per the site, there are at least four in Yonkers.

Individuals who are in need of health insurance can apply for New York State Medicaid or private health insurance plans through the New York State of Health. There is also information available to Westchester County residents from the Westchester County Department of Health. Individuals who are looking for support from a nonprofit may be able to locate one in Westchester County through Nonprofit Westchester.

Individuals who reside in Yonkers and are seeking recovery services can limit their search to the most local facilities offering recovery services or perform an expanded search. The location of Yonkers makes treatment in New York, New Jersey, or Connecticut convenient. While location is only one of the factors involved in selecting a rehab, it can be an important one.

All a person needs to know, however, is that they need help. If services are sought at a rehab center, an intake specialist will typically conduct an intake interview and work with an addiction specialist team to make a recommendation as to the level of care needed and the advisable duration of stay. A person who has decided to commit to the recovery process will find that there is plenty of help available.