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City Council Denies Proposed Wheaton Drug Rehab Facility

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- A Chicago substance abuse center says it will try again to find a location to open a small program in DuPage County after being turned down Tuesday by the Wheaton City Council.

Dr. Dan Lustig, CEO of Haymarket Chicago, says DuPage County, like other communities, has been hit by the opioid epidemic, and that a treatment center in Wheaton could have served people with addictions.

"It's really unfortunate because so many people in the area need this life-saving treatment," he said.

Dr. Lustig proposed opening an out-patient center as well as a 16-bed in-patient substance abuse program. Wheaton City Council, however, voted 4-0 against a zoning change that would have allowed the center.

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"Many of the residents, and many of the subject matter experts that testified against this proposal, actually presented a lot of misguided and inaccurate information," Lustig said. "That really generated a lot of hate and fear in the community about us opening out there."

As a result, Lustig says he has a real estate expert searching other areas of DuPage County that might be more welcoming. "We were there because we're going to where the need was."

Dr. Lustig said there were several inaccuracies, including that Haymarket planned to bring in "criminals" and "people from Chicago." He says that was not true, adding that Haymarket Chicago in the West Loop is large enough to serve people in the city.

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