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Head of Phoenix shelter testifies during hearing headed by McSally

U.S. Rep. Martha McSally, R-Ariz., speaks after delivering her signatures to the Arizona Secretary of State's office Tuesday, May 29, 2018, at the Capitol in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

PHOENIX — The congressional subcommittee hearing led by Rep. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.) heard from various advocates during a hearing in Phoenix.

One of those giving testimony was Jay Cory, the chief executive officer and president of the Phoenix Rescue Mission.

Cory told the panel there needs to be comprehensive drug recovery programs.

“Comprehensive meaning case management services, academic assistance, English as a second language, vocational and development job placements, spiritual growth counseling,” Cory said.

Cory also testified the Phoenix Rescue Mission recently admitted more than 500 men for drug treatment.

“The top disclosed drugs of choice for substance abuse were alcohol, stimulant cannabis and opiates,” Cory said. “Opiates were 38 percent.”

Cory said the crackdown on prescription opioids is working. However, Cory said drug users are turning to a cheaper alternative like heroin.

Drugs are also a contributing factor to an increase in the homeless population.

“There’s a large underserved population of men, women and families facing poverty, homelessness and trauma in Arizona and especially in the Phoenix metropolitan area,” Cory said.

According to Cory, there are 1.1 million people living below the poverty line in Arizona.