Westbrook’s first recovery liaison has stepped down from her role with the Police Department but is staying in the city as a drug and alcohol counselor in private practice.

Danielle Rideout is set to receive a master’s degree in counseling from the University of Southern Maine this spring and already has a list of former liaison clients who have signed up to see her when she opens her doors, she said. Already certified as a drug and alcohol counselor, Rideout has been taking some telehealth appointments to help clients with those issues.

Once she graduates, she will be able to provide a wider range of counseling, Rideout said, but between school and her children, she was too busy to keep up with her work as the city’s recovery liaison.

“This role got me the opportunity to connect with amazing people and meet them right on the street, be in their homes, and see that side of things, where I wouldn’t get to be in that part of their lives,” she said.

Rideout often would accompany officers responding to calls involving drug and alcohol misuse during her five years on the job and she worked on hundreds of cases per year. Her work ranged from connecting people to rehab or counselors to dropping off food and other supplies for her clients in need. She’d also often find medical care for clients and drive them to doctor appointments.

Westbrook Partners for Prevention Director Janet Dosseva said Rideout saved lives.


“She was really great at meeting people where they are at and listening to what they wanted and needed,” Dosseva said. “Danielle was able to make referrals to get folks treatment, housing, food, clothes, jobs, etc. She also provided Narcan and training how to use it, indirectly saving many lives throughout the community.”

Dosseva also gives credit to Rideout for the recently added “sharps boxes” around the city where people can safely dispose of needles.

The Police Department is actively seeking Rideout’s replacement.

“Danielle is a knowledgeable, dedicated, kind and compassionate professional,” Chief Sean Lally said. “She’s been an advocate for those suffering from substance use disorders and their families. Over the past five years, Danielle has become part of our Westbrook PD family and although we are all sad she’s leaving the department, we’re excited for her future and know she will be successful in the next chapter of her professional life.”

Comments are not available on this story.