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Police, human services welcome new recovery specialist

Overdose memorial candles

Chief Julie Flaherty and Director of Health and Human Services Christine Bongiorno have announced the hiring of Thomas Caccavaro Jr. as the departments' new part-time recovery specialist.

"We are fortunate to have Tommy as a part of our team to supplement our current jail-diversion work and our ability to provide important resources and treatment services to those living with substance-use disorder," Chief Flaherty said.

Caccavaro is a graduate of Arlington High School and describes himself as part of a long line of Spy Ponders. He will help enhance the departments' capacity to support those living with substance-use disorders by connecting them to treatment and recovery services.

Recovery Coach - Tommy CaccavaroRecovery coach Tom Caccavaro Jr. / APD photo

Long-term sobriety

Caccavaro is now in long-term sobriety following 20 years of active addiction. His addiction started at a young age, and, because of peer pressure and environmental factors, he experimented with drug and alcohol without realizing the struggles he would face, including incarceration.

Today, Caccavaro is close to eight years of sobriety, and works to support others who are in need of support for substance use disorder in Arlington and throughout the state. He is a business owner and a co-founder of Arlington Overcoming Addiction.

Using his lived experience, he offers peer support and recovery coaching meeting Arlington residents where they are at, offering support throughout their recovery process.

Residents attending a 2015 vigil at Arlington High School heard Caccavaro witness.

Role in town job

In his role with the town, Caccavaro will be working under the direction of the Jail Diversion Clinician to work directly with individuals who experience adverse events related to substance use, as well as their families, to provide support and access to tools to prevent future adverse events. 

Caccavaro will reach out to the family and support network of an individual who experiences an adverse event and develop a plan to reach out directly to the individual depending upon their needs and willingness to engage.

Additionally, Caccavaro will identify treatment partners and providers to help facilitate efficient placements, and meet with intake coordinators at each facility to clarify processes, eligibility, level of care provided, and more.

Caccavaro will work collaboratively to share information and resources with other service providers, including the jail-diversion clinician, homeless-outreach clinician and Somerville Homeless Coalition staff. He will also work within the community to host events and training.

"Tommy is passionate about the work and supporting those going through the recovery process, as well as educating the community, and we look forward to seeing the positive difference he can make," Bongiorno said.

Caccavaro began in his role earlier this month.

He can be reached at 781-777-3171 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. He also may be reached through the Police Department at 781-643-1212.

Sept. 1, 2015: First memorial vigil views addiction from those who suffer


This news announcement was published Wednesday, April 20, 2022. The information was provided by Leah Comins of John Guilfoil Public Relations.

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