More grandparents raising grandchildren because of opioid crisis

MANITOWOC, Wis. - Grandmothers are taking action in Manitowoc. They say they see a growing trend in grandparents raising grandchildren and it all goes back to the opioid crisis.

Rep. Paul Tittl (R-Manitowoc) says three grandmothers contacted his office discussing their situations and reasons they believe those situations are being more common.

Rep. Paul Tittl says these grandmothers are raising their grandchildren because their children are drug addicts.

At a conference Thursday, known as the "In The Best Interest Of The Child" summit, those caregivers shared their stories, including the difficulties they had navigating the system – with routes of foster care and guardianship.

Cindy Oswald says her daughter is a heroin addict and she's been taking care of her granddaughter nearly all of her life. 

“There are times you're so afraid,” said Oswald. “There are times you cannot understand what's happening to you and your family and I think that our goal was not only to put the best interest of every child before their addicted parents, but specially to let other family or good friend caregivers know they're not alone and resources exist.”

The grandmothers who spoke at the conference say they want a support system to help them and others navigate the system. They also feel a state-wide support group would help as well. 

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