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Delaware home could hold key for addicted women

Volunteers worked to put final touches on the Unity House in Delaware, a home for women fighting addiction. (WSYX/WTTE)

A home in Delaware could hold the key for getting addicted women to transition from being behind bars to a productive life in society.

The Unity House will open its doors to the public Friday, with residents living there beginning in June.

During the day the Unity House will have an office for those recently released from jail or prison to get the resources they need. At night, it will be home to up to six women, struggling with drug addiction, living dormitory-style and sharing the home.

"Typically, it's very difficult for individuals to garner housing with records, especially felony records," said Matthew Walls, who has two other houses like this in Columbus.

Walls said the stability of the home helps the women get back on their feet. The Delaware County prosecutor said there is evidence this approach can be successful.

"Part of the problem when someone gets out of jail or prison, they're going right back to the places they were in or the old people they were hanging around with," said Carol O'Brien. "So, this is a way to stop the pattern."

Walls said current inmates are being interviewed to find appropriate candidates to live in the home. The women will spend at least six months living in the house.

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