US drug czar boosts treatment with personal story

MINOT, N.D. (AP) — The nation's drug czar says the shift in his office from a justice-driven to a treatment-driven strategy hits home with him.

Michael Botticelli is the acting director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy who recently celebrated his 25th year of sobriety. He says addiction continues to be highly stigmatized and it's important for him and other people to tell their stories.

Botticelli was in North Dakota this week to talk about the administration's focus on combatting drug crimes in the oil patch. He also talked about the difficulty of getting treatment programs up and running in rural areas like North Dakota.

Botticelli says federal funding for prevention, treatment and recovery is at its highest level in 12 years, and he hopes his own experience helps others.

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