Drug Rehabs in San Juan, PR

As a major seaport between Latin America and the continental United States, San Juan is overflowing with cocaine, heroin, and other illegal drugs and many San Juan residents are suffering from addiction. The substance abuse crisis in San Juan has worsened since 2017 when Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico.

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    Drug Trafficking in San Juan

    San Juan, Puerto Rico is a major center for drug trafficking. Cocaine and heroin are the two controlled substances which traffickers most often smuggle through Puerto Rico to the United States mainland. The Puerto Rican government has estimated that only 10% of illegal drugs which traffickers bring into Puerto Rico remain on the island. Nevertheless, drug traffickers collect about $366 million in revenue every year from selling drugs in San Juan and throughout Puerto Rico, according to the government. The Puerto Rican Police Department regularly collaborates with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency and U.S. Border Patrol to arrest drug traffickers in San Juan and confiscate their supply. In 2018, authorities arrested 97 San Juan residents for conspiracy to distribute cocaine, heroin, synthetic opioids, and marijuana. In 2017, Puerto Rico police confiscated almost 66,000 pounds of cocaine worth $100 million in San Juan and Puerto Rico. Many traffickers bring drugs into San Juan on small boats which often depart from Venezuela.  In fact, in 2018, Puerto Rican police seized 1,300 pounds of cocaine valued at $15.6 million from one fishing boat.

    Heroin and Opioids in San Juan

    There are many Puerto Ricans in San Juan who are addicted to opioids, many of which are illegally manufactured and distributed. Many people who become addicted to opioids also try heroin, a very dangerous drug which is exacting a heavy toll on many lives in San Juan. In 2016, 72 Puerto Ricans suffered a fatal opioid overdose. In 2017, 68 people in Puerto Rico lost their lives to fentanyl, an opioid even more lethal than heroin which traffickers often lace into other drugs. Fentanyl claimed 40 lives in Puerto Rico within the first five months of 2018. Many San Juan residents are also struggling with addiction to other opioids, such as Oxycodone and Xanax.

    Substance Abuse and Violence in San Juan

    Drug abuse destroys lives wherever it takes place, but illegal drugs have brought armed violence into San Juan along with fatal overdoses. In 2017, 169 people were murdered in San Juan. The Mayor of San Juan stated in 2018 that drug trafficking is the cause of many San Juan homicides. Many Puerto Ricans who are involved in drug trafficking are under the age of 18 and live in poverty, and therefore are more vulnerable to violence and exploitation. Sexual violence is also a major factor in the substance abuse crisis in Puerto Rico, especially among women. Sociologists from the US Department of Health and Human Services estimate that 73% of Puerto Rican women who are addicted to illegal drugs have suffered some form of sexual abuse, often from members of their own families.

    Substance Abuse in San Juan after Hurricane Maria

    Puerto Rico suffered the worst natural disaster in its history when the Category 5 Hurricane Maria struck the island in 2017. The hurricane destroyed thousands of homes, completely disabled electricity throughout Puerto Rico, and destroyed millions of dollars worth of agriculture. Researchers estimate that about 5,000 Puerto Ricans died as a result of Hurricane Maria and a subsequent humanitarian crisis which lasted for months while authorities worked to reopen transportation, rebuild infrastructure, and restore the power grid.

    For Puerto Ricans who are addicted to illegal drugs, the effects of Hurricane Maria have been especially devastating. Non-profit organizations which provide medical treatment and counseling services to San Juan residents who are addicted to opioids and heroin have lost access to important financial resources and sometimes struggle to reach the people they hope to help. Some “harm reduction” organizations in San Juan are distributing clean syringes to drug users to make sure that they do not contract diseases from dirty needles, which are often the only needles available now after the hurricane. Although humanitarian groups are working hard to help addicted Puerto Ricans, the hurricane has caused the prices of illegal drugs to rise in San Juan and many people who are addicted now spend all the money they can obtain from begging to buy drugs and avoid withdrawal. Hurricane Maria has caused all Puerto Ricans to suffer, but substance abusers who already lived in poverty before the hurricane have become even more desperate and vulnerable in the post-Maria era.

    Finding Help in San Juan

    For people in San Juan who are struggling to overcome addiction and substance abuse, the situation can be dire. Drug abuse and violence are serious problems in San Juan, but fortunately, anyone can reclaim their life from addiction with the right support. Contact a dedicated treatment professional today to get more information on how to start your recovery.

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      Government Programs

      Find local government programs that promote sober living and will help you find peace in your day to day life.

      NameLocationPhone
      Area 77: Puerto RicoCarr. 189 1 A4
      Caguas Puerto Rico

      College Programs

      DCODE ( Department of Counseling for Student Development)

      University of Puerto Rico-Rio Piedras

      DCODE is a multidisciplinary team of experts with educational training dedicated in Counseling, Social Work and Psychology and with authorized to observe our several professions in Puerto Rico. The DCODE is connected to the Dean of Students of the University of Puerto Rico.

      PO Box 23137
      San Juan, Puerto Rico 00931-3137

      The Psychological Services Clinic of the Music Conservatory of Puerto Rico

      Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music

      In collaboration with Carlos Albizu University and its Community Mental Health Clinic we offer the Psychological Services Clinic of the Music Conservatory of Puerto Rico. The different services offered by UCA practitioners can be accessed free of cost by the students, employees and faculty of the Conservatory of Music of Puerto Rico. We provide services such as Psychological therapies, Psychometric and psychological assessments. The services offered by UCA practitioners assigned are to the Conservatory: Individual therapies: Children and adolescents with behavioral, psychological, emotional problems, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, behavioral disorders, school dysfunction, learning problems. The adults and elderly are provided services on anxiety, personal problems, anxiety, low self-esteem, family and psychological problems.

      951 Ponce de Leon Avenue
      San Juan, Puerto Rico 00907-3373

      Guidance and Counseling

      Universidad Politecnica de Puerto Rico

      The Guidance and Counseling Office is dedicated to the mission and objectives of the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico, offering students with the necessary tools to maximize their social, academic, personal and professional potential.The main purpose of the institution is to guide the students and help them with personal and family issues, making decisions, and any situation obstructs them to accomplish their personal objectives. The services offered are academic planning, Guidance, enrollment, vocational and personal counseling, and referrals are, among others.

      377 Ponce De Leon Avenue
      San Juan, 00918

      Counseling Services

      Atlantic University College

      Students are provided guidance on the Policy of Academic Progress and services for students with special needs are also coordinated. To help students in managing their academic, vocational, occupational, educational, and personal worries we provide you with the Guidance and Counseling Office. Additionally, students are assisted in clarifying their values, attitudes, interests, skills, exploring vocational opportunities, making educational and vocational plans, study habits, and personal issues.

      9 Calle George L Colton
      Guaynabo, 00969, Puerto Rico

      Counseling Services

      University of Puerto Rico-Carolina

      University of Puerto Rico-Carolina offers remedial services for students. Apart from that we also provide services for academic/career counseling services, employment services for students, Placement services for completers.

      Carretera 887 Bo San Anton
      Carolina, PR 00984-4800

      Programs in San Juan

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      Fellowships
      Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)
      Narcotics Anonymous (NA)

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