Editor's note: This is the first installment of an ongoing series about substance use disorder in Carlton County, and this week’s stories turns attention toward understanding the scope of the opioid epidemic as seen on the front lines.

This reporting piggybacks off the Sunday, March 3, launch of the Duluth News Tribune's series, “Overdose: In Plain View,” which will continue to explore opioid overdoses specifically. The Pine Journal’s series, “Addiction: Everybody’s Problem,” will take a wider approach and eventually explore the rise of meth in Carlton County, as seen by law enforcement.

Over several months, the Pine Journal will report closely on the ever pressing presence of opioids and other substances, the growing number of people linking arms to tackle these issues, the stories of people in recovery and the gaps that still need to be closed.

Addiction is a powerful force, but it is treatable, especially with the help of an even stronger army of people coming together on behalf of those fighting for recovery - making this everyone’s problem.