March 24, 2015                                                The Latest Addiction News                                                       Vol. 2., No. 31
AA Under Fire! No Comment
The Irrationality of Alcoholics Anonymous?   

Its faith-based 12-step program dominates treatment in the United States. But researchers have debunked central tenets of AA doctrine and found dozens of other treatments more effective.

Opinion: Tommy Rosen
Rebuttal to The (above) Atlantic Article ‘The Irrationality of Alcoholics Anonymous’    

The Atlantic published a painfully one-sided article by Gabrielle Glaser this week called The Irrationality of Alcoholics Anonymous. Then the article was highlighted on the All In with Chris Hayes on MSNBC. There are four main issues that I will address from Glaser’s article in the Atlantic:

Get well at New Method Wellness

Useful Information   VIDEO
Fentanyl dangers explained  VIDEO    

Fifty one overdose deaths have been reported in Rhode Island so far this year and an overwhelming majority of those deaths involve the drug fentanyl. “Fentanyl is an exquisitely potent opiod receptor agonist which means it works in a similar way to the heroin,” said Dr. Jason Hack the Director of Rhode Island Hospital’s division of medical toxicology. Hack explains why this drug is so dangerous.


Proper English Recovery     VIDEO
Coronation Street star Michael Le Vell off booze for a year thanks to Alcoholics Anonymous VIDEO    

Michael Le Vell deserves a medal for staying sober for a year – and will be getting a bronze one inscribed with a prayer this week. The 50-year-old Coronation Street star hasn’t had a drink since he checked into rehab a year ago to tackle his booze and drug problems. The actor, who used to down up to 12 pints of lager a day and admitted taking cocaine to get him through tough times, revealed that regular Alcoholics Anonymous meetings have helped him turn his back on drink.

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Planning Ahead?
State of the Art Course in Addiction Medicine    

The goal of ASAM’s Course on the State of the Art Course in Addiction Medicine is to present the most up-to-date information on the science of addiction and the practice of addiction medicine. Program sessions will focus on the latest research into the causes, prevention and treatment of addictive disorders, and will translate the research findings into clinically useful knowledge. October 6 – 8, 2016  
Washington Hilton, 1919 Connecticut Ave, NW, Washington, DC

 Twelve Promises: Rewards of Recovery

Opinion: Helping Parents Communicate AUDIO
How to talk to your kids about drugs and alcohol AUDIO    

Parenthood includes a never-ending list of questions. But one of the most nerve-racking times is when a child enters the early teenage years. Thoughts may turn to how to keep your kid away from alcohol and drugs. While there is no one answer, there are strategies for success.


Mis(sing) Information
Much Still Not Known About Overdoses From Methadone    

In some ways, Bonnie White was a typical methadone patient; in other ways she was not. And that paradox may have been a factor in her death last year at age 35. White grew up in Fitzwilliam and lived in Keene at the time of her death. She used drugs, including heroin, heavily in her 20s. In more recent years, family and friends said she worked hard to stay clean. Keene Metro Treatment Center is a methadone clinic. She had previously told a doctor she was thinking about attending a Suboxone clinic because she felt she needed “chronic opiates,” according to her medical records.


Community Education on Cape Cod
Gosnold Hosts Addiction Medicine Specialist for Lecture Series    

Dr. Charles Reznikoff treats people in pain but he also treats opiate addicts. He brought that expertise to Cape Cod this week in a free lecture Wednesday night. As the second lecture in Gosnold on Cape Cod’s Charlie Wilkerson Memorial Series, Reznikoff spoke about his experiences as an addiction medicine specialist. He brought a message of hope, that he has seen treatment work for many people.

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Ex-Boxing Champ Steps Back Into Spotlight As A Face Of Addiction AUDIO/VIDEO    

While millions admit to using marijuana, cocaine and meth, addiction is not talked about openly, especially among the country’s rich or famous, but one former champion boxer has set out to change the image of recovering addicts and rehabilitation.

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$500 a day? In Malibu That’s Almost Pro Bono
New Rehab Caters to High-end Patients    

As the heroin epidemic has grown in Massachusetts, so has the number of addicts with deep pockets looking to kick their habit. And to tap into this market, Spectrum Health Systems Inc., a Worcester-based addiction services provider, next month will open a residential treatment facility that offers such amenities. The new facility will serve people who want to escape a life of drugs and can pay as much as $500 a day to do it.

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Arizona = Arizona
Bill advances to allow liquor stores next to schools and churches    

Stores that sell beer, wine and liquor could spring up next to churches and schools under the terms of legislation approved March 18 by the House Judiciary Committee. Existing law requires a buffer of at least 300 feet. But Mike Williams, lobbyist for the Circle K Corporation, said that has created problems for his client with the ability of churches and charter schools to locate in certain commercial areas. SB1419 eliminates that requirement if the shop is at least 4,500 square feet, offers fresh produce and does not have a drive-through window for alcoholic beverages.

Come to Denver This Spring

The War Is Here   VIDEO
$3 mil. center for veterans with PTSD & addiction in Upstate New York VIDEO    

St. Joseph’s Addiction Treatment & Recovery Centers, in Saranac Lake, NY has opened its $3 million, 25-bed intensive residential treatment facility for male veterans suffering from addiction and PTSD. The veterans’ residence is one of just three such facilities in New York State.

Modern Life
Addicted to love in the age of loneliness    

Social isolation, we’re told, is as potent a cause of early death as smoking 15 cigarettes a day; loneliness, research suggests, is twice as deadly as obesity. Dementia, high blood pressure, alcoholism and accidents – all these, like depression, paranoia, anxiety and suicide, become more prevalent when connections are cut. We cannot cope alone. CONTINUED @  

Colleges Get Smart   AUDIO
Amid Rising Concern About Addiction, Universities Focus On Recovery AUDIO    

In murder mystery novels, when the hero, a private detective or homicide cop, drops by a late-night Alcoholics Anonymous meeting to stave off a sudden craving for a beer or two or 20, it’s usually in some dingy church basement or dilapidated storefront on the seedier side of town. There’s a pot of burnt coffee and a few stale doughnuts on a back table.

What About Motorcylclists?
Sobriety tests in all new cars might prevent most drunk driving deaths    

The screening tool to do this is still in development, and may not be road-ready for another five to eight years, said Dr. Bud Zaouk, who is working to develop the technology, known as the driver alcohol detection system for safety, or DADSS. It would prevent a car from moving if the driver has a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or greater – the legal limit in all 50 states – and could be set to zero for drivers under the legal drinking age.


Professional Advice
Seeking Help for Addiction    

So how do you help someone who is addicted to drugs or alcohol? Sometimes reaching out to the individual during the beginning signs of use is a matter of life or death. This is definitely not an easy process and may be very difficult. I am happy to inform you that you have completed the first step in this process, which is trying to find out how to help.

7% Solution
Why Heroin Overdoses Are Rising and How We Can Prevent Them  

1. Most new users came to heroin as a result of addiction to prescription drugs.
2. Quitting heroin is the easy part–the hard part is staying off.
3. The users trying to quit for good run the greatest risk of overdose.
4. We could stop people from dying of overdose, except we can’t find them.
5. We can remove the risk of death by creating Safe Injection Facilities.


Wretching Attempt at Sobriety  VIDEO
Ibogaine attracts “Kardashian” celebrity, scrutiny from Costa Rica officials VIDEO     

The reality star Disick came to Costa Rica this week not for beaches and zip lining but rather a controversial rehab treatment. Kourtney Kardashian’s on-again-off-again beau and father of her three children checked into the Rythmia Life Advancement Center in Hacienda Pinilla, Guanacaste to try to conquer his alcoholism with shaman-guided trips using iboga, a root from West Africa outlawed in the United States.

Alcoholism – Plain and Simple
Devoured by demons: Grand Forks woman, 28, dies after battling alcoholism     

Jace Erickson remembers finding a box of empty liquor bottles among his sister’s belongings while helping her move between homes a few years ago near St. Louis. He tucked the box behind the truck’s front seat, where Caitlin couldn’t see it, planning to throw the bottles away later without her noticing. Caitlin’s family and friends aren’t sure  how her alcoholism started, but pointed to one instance that seemed to push the addiction out of control.


Suffering and Sadness
Son of a Kearney couple seeks treatment, then wanders into tragedy    

Several months after Ted and Kim Jacques buried their son, the phone rang. A California newspaper reporter told the Kearney couple that Brandon, 20, before his death had been shipped around to detox centers that routinely lied about their treatment programs and profited from the transfers.


Confusion in the Court
Drug courts at odds with each other and the feds 

Instead of locking up defendants, drug courts allow prosecutors, public defenders, judges and others to work together to get defendants to much-needed drug treatment. But there are clashing opinions about how drug courts should operate. Many judges, including Nauhaus, ban drug court participants from using treatments like methadone and buprenorphine, calling such medications a “chemical crutch.” He requires participants to focus on abstinence.



Saturday, May 16, 2015  

The 2nd Annual Comedy Benefit, “Laugh for Recovery” which is YPR-NJ’s major fundraiser is slated for 6:30PM May 16, at the Old Bridge Knights of Columbus (61 Pine Street, Old Bridge, NJ). Last year’s event was a great success, and this year’s Comedy Benefit will be even better.

Old Bridge Knights of Columbus  

61 Pine Street, Old Bridge, NJ  




May 29-31, 2015  

The 1st Denver Edition 2015
With CeDAR and Writers In Treatment
Denver Film Society
SIE Film Center
2510 E. Colfax Ave., Denver, CO 80206

Call for more information:


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Debate Over Efficacy of AA   VIDEO
         Does AA Work?           VIDEO     

As Alcoholics Anonymous, the most prevalent alcohol-abuse treatment method in the United States, and the 12-step model come under new scrutiny, Chris Hayes presides over a vigorous debate over the efficacy of AA and its place in our culture.

Follow The Money

President and CEO, National Council for Behavioral Health

Gabrielle Glaser’s piece in The Atlantic  reminds me of the Maya Angelou quote, “I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.”  It isn’t that AA set out to steer us in the wrong direction, away from science.  People do find AA valuable. It’s that science supports a different direction. Now that we have more information, we must adapt and do better.

If Springsteen Wrote About Heroin
Hotlips  – a recollection by Bob Ingram    

…One of his sons shinnied up the rainspout to our old apartment at Third and Pine and he was sitting dead on the couch with the spike still in his arm, his face stretched into a tight death mask. Skag did that to him; almost before he took the needle out of his arm, his face would go all hollow and his cheeks suck themselves in and he’d look like he’d just shot embalming fluid. The fucking heroin was dark and patient magic and it waited him out. He stayed away for decades and then it reeled him in. It only took that first hit — one and done. AUTHOR: Bob Ingram is a writer/journalist/editor/filmmaker whose work has appeared in Philadelphia Magazine, Atlantic City Magazine, South Jersey Magazine, …

Courtroom Trauma
Priest who shepherded meth ring pleads for mercy    

A suspended Roman Catholic priest who authorities say dealt pounds of methamphetamine and bought a sex shop to possibly launder his drug money is asking a federal judge for leniency when he is sentenced next week.


His House & New Creation Treatment

Compassion For Addicts Comes First VIDEO
Dr. Gabor Maté and the Compelling Case for Legalizing Pot  VIDEO

“The Culture High” is a feature-length crowd-funded documentary that analyzes modern day marijuana prohibition and reveals the truth behind the arguments and motives governing both those who support and oppose the existing marijuana laws. In this clip addiction specialist Dr. Gabor Mate makes the argument that marijuana is less harmful than many drugs that are legal in the US.

Brandi’s Wish

Detox With Dignity Now

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Surrender to Win
17 Celebrities Who Have Successfully Battled Drug Addiction    

We dance to their songs and immerse into the universes of their movies. However, while idolizing them, we often forget that they are just human. They laugh, they cry, they have emotions that span outside of the fictional characters they present us with. However, being human also means that you make mistakes. Sometimes, the mistake can be a minor one, barely noticeable, but in other cases it can be life changing.

Bridges To Recovery

Class Rooms For Everyone
NYC Pre-K Classes To Share Building With Downtown Drug Abuse Center     

Howard Josepher, president of Exponents, in an email to, said he understands parents’ concerns, but he is confident there will be no issue with the shared building. “People come to Exponents because they seek the education and skills necessary for a better life. We have been providing this opportunity for 27 years and take pride in the safety it brings to our community and our neighbors.” Exponents, which does not dispense any kind of medication and treats about 60 people a day, was located in Chelsea for more than 19 years.

 The 6th Annual WCASD Conference

NPR Fresh Air Interview  AUDIO
Released From Prison, ‘Apologetic Bandit’ Writes About Life Inside   AUDIO  

After he was arrested for robbing people at knifepoint in 2003, Daniel Genis was nicknamed in the press as “the apologetic bandit.” He offered apologies to his victims as he took their cash. The money was to pay off his debt to his heroin dealer. “Drug addiction causes you to compromise – it makes you compromise your morals. William Burroughs said you’d crawl through a sewer just to have the privilege of copping, and it turned out to be true.”

How To Remember a Loved One
When Drug Addiction Conquers All    

I go to Al-Anon. It’s been drilled into me to keep the focus on myself, because I can’t control anything about this disease, which is absolutely true. But I still ache to toss a bunch of words in the air and let them rearrange themselves into magic that will somehow prevent kids from saying yes to the wolves, or becoming them. Noah’s high school drama teacher spoke of his many gifts, and so did his music teachers, who got up and sang, “I Shall Be Released.” They sang for all of us, but most of all they sang for Noah. There were sunflowers everywhere.

Help Yourself to Some GRACE
“Grace” The Movie Set =Two DVDs and a Facilitator’s Guide (2014)  from Hazelden  

Gracie is given a choice: six months in jail or 90 meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous in 90 days, and she has to do it in the small town she’s landed in. The award winning movie Grace, along with the multimedia group curriculum and facilitator’s guide, can be a great way to engage your treatment clients in a very compelling and unique way. “GRACE.” compassionately looks at the disease of addiction through a young woman inching towards redemption. Stars: Annika Marks, Sharon Lawrence, Chase Mowen

Rosario Dawson
What Chris Rock Can Teach Us About Sobriety and Creativity    

Later, in the film’s climactic moment, Allen tells the journalist, “Do you want to know why I won’t make any funny films? Because I never did it clean. Every time you ever seen me be funny I was drunk or high or both. Every time. Every show I was fucked up. And now people want me to be funny. And you know what? I don’t know if I can do it. I’m scared. I am scared.”

Rapper Obituary
A$AP Yams Cause Of Death Revealed, Rapper Died Of Drug Intoxication    

According to the New York Times, A$AP Yams’ test revealed that he had opiates and benzodiazepine in his system. The test results were ruled in an email by New York City’s chief medical examiner. As stated, on January 18, the rapper was found unresponsive in his Brooklyn apartment. He was taken to the Woodhull Medical Center in Brooklyn where he was later pronounced dead.

Not Just In the USA
Prescription drugs involved in 82% of overdose deaths, Victoria coroner says    

The number of deaths associated with prescription drugs used to treat stress, anxiety and insomnia are increasing at a “frightening” rate, a coroner has told attendees at a medical conference in Melbourne. Prescription drugs were involved in 82% of the 384 overdose deaths investigated by the Victorian coroner’s court in 2014, Audrey Jamieson told the International Medicine in Addiction conference on Saturday.

Stop The Madness   VIDEO
Graphic Video Puts A Face On The Rising Heroin Addiction Rates  VIDEO

Summer Myers died in January at the age of 26. She was a heroin addict. Now, Jackie Smallwood, Myers’ mother, wants you to hear her daughter’s story, the Alaska Dispatch News reports. In a graphic video, Smallwood describes her daughter as a perfectionist and honor-roll student. But, when Myers began using heroin, her whole personality changed.

Celebrity Treatment
Liza Minnelli checks into rehab facility for substance abuse    

Liza Minnelli entered a rehab facility and is receiving treatment for substance abuse, her rep told the Daily News. The actress, 69, is already making “excellent progress” since she was recently admitted, the rep said. “Liza Minnelli has valiantly battled substance abuse over the years and whenever she has needed to seek treatment she has done so,” her rep said in a statement. Much like her mother Judy Garland, the singer has struggled with addiction.

It’s a Family Affair
34 Members of the Same Family Arrested in Drug Bust

The investigation started last year and ramped up in the past two months, culminating in the arrests Friday, March 13 and Monday, March 16, investigators said during a press conference.  The leaders of what’s been dubbed the Burns, Milton and Tillman Drug Trafficking Organization by authorities are Jarvis Burns, 33, of Sheffield Lake, who paid for the cocaine, and his cousin Travis Milton, 32, of Elyria, who orchestrated large-scale buys from two dealers in Cleveland.


Rave On Aldous Huxley
DEA approves study using MDMA for anxiety in seriously ill patients     

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has approved the first clinical trial using MDMA along with psychotherapy to treat anxiety among people with life-threatening illnesses, adding that public support for the therapeutic use of psychedelic drugs is rapidly growing.

Commander In Spliff
5 Stunning Comments From President Obama Regarding the Legalization of Marijuana     

President Obama weighs in on the marijuana debate. However, it’s tough to wrap our hands around what the future might hold for marijuana without first considering what the most powerful person in America thinks of the currently illegal drug. Federal legalization of marijuana, even on a medical level, is unlikely to become a law without President Obama’s signature; thus his views on marijuana could have a particularly strong bearing on its future.

Better Than An Orange Jump Suit
Council on Alcohol & Drug Abuse Provides
Free Prom Attire to Sober Teens  

Students will sign a pledge to stay safe and sober on prom night, attend workshops for healthy living and attend a fashion show where they will choose a free dress or tuxedo for prom night.

                          CONTINUED @ 

For People That Want It
Homeless Former U.N.C. Player Balks at Efforts to Help Him    

Ryan Hoffman, the former offensive lineman at North Carolina who is now homeless in Florida, Former football teammates who had not talked to him for nearly 20 years wanted to know how they could get him off the streets. An elementary school friend offered to pick him up and drive him to rehab. Officials at the University of North Carolina called to say they wanted to fly him in a private jet to Chapel Hill for a medical evaluation. Could he leave in just a few days?


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