I think punishing people for their addictions absolutely does not work. Treatment and helping people work through their problems which contributed to their hopelessness is the way to go. Just "legalizing heroin" wouldn't work, but legalizing it as part of a formal treatment which I think is what he was talking about makes sense. Medication Assisted Treatment (not heroin) has already helped a lot of people in the United States. They key though is helping people work through the problems which led to the addiction. None of this is easy of course because there is a strong physical component of addiction too.