NEW! Sobering Center
The Sobering Center is a 25-bed facility to receive individuals identified as publicly intoxicated by NOPD, State Police, other law enforcement agents based within Orleans Parish, and/or New Orleans EMS. Intoxicated individuals would stay at the facility while they sober up, under the care of trained staff. The Sobering Center will welcome and care for anyone so deemed publicly intoxicated, including “chronic inebriates,” i.e. people with substance use disorders who live on the streets, as well as visitors to New Orleans who have over-imbibed.
The Sobering Center addresses public safety for both inebriated clients and the general population. Rather than remaining on the streets, vulnerable individuals are removed from harm’s way or an escalating situation and brought to a safe, secure environment until they are able to make more conscious choices. The Sobering Center is a more appropriate destination than jails or emergency rooms, as clients will be monitored for specific cues, recover from immediate acute alcohol impairment, and have a “warm handoff” into medically supported detox or additional services if appropriate.
Currently, the Sobering Center is in a soft pilot stage, intaking clients through OHL’s treatment networks. Within the next few weeks, the Sobering Center will begin to accept referrals and drop offs from first responder agencies.
To be eligible for Sobering Center admission, the client must be:
- Conscious and ambulatory (client can walk, or be assisted in walking, through the door)
- 18 years or older
- Impaired on alcohol; clients who are impaired from other substances may be transferred to hospital emergency department or a detox program including OHL’s Medically Supported Detox program.
Both voluntary admissions via walk-ins and inebriated individuals deemed necessary for admission by EMS or NOPD will be admitted.
The average length of stay at the Sobering Center would be 4-8 hours, at which point individuals would be released and referred to additional services if needed.
Upon sobering up, an over-imbibed visitor or resident will simply return to their hotel or home via ride share, taxi or personal pickup. However, especially important for street-dwelling, serially inebriated clients, the Sobering Center will uniquely serve as a much-needed intervention and referral for substance abuse treatment programs, including the OHL's Medically Supported Detoxification center and Residential Treatment Program. OHL will arrange tranportation to admit willing clients into treatment as soon as they are ready.
OHL is thrilled to partner with the City of New Orleans, NOPD, New Orleans EMS and the New Orleans Department of Health for this project.
Contact Information for Sobering Center
If you see an intoxicated individual in need of services, please call 911. All admits should be evaluated by EMS or NOPD to ensure that they are medically stable to enter the Sobering Center and do not need a higher level of care.
If you have questions about the Sobering Center, you may use the contact lines below.
Phone: (504) 821-9211, Option 5
Fax: (504) 459-0109