July 26, 2016

Dear Shatterproof,

We recently received your latest fund-raising promotion titled, “Stay Dry in July.” After reading it with great interest, we would appreciate clarification on a few key points.

Your literature states:

Every dollar you raise will help us provide evidence-based resources, work with elected officials to strengthen laws, and support all Americans who’ve been touched by this disease.”

  1. The term “evidence based” is well-defined when referring to medical practice.

Evidence-based practice is the practice of health care in which the practitioner systematically finds, appraises, and uses the most current and valid research findings as the basis for clinical decisions. (Mosby’s Medical Dictionary, 9th edition. © 2009, Evidence-based health care is the concept that the practice of medicine should be based on firm data rather than anecdote, tradition, intuition, or belief. (Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners)

  • What exactly do you mean by “Evidence Based Resources?”

Please provide a few examples of how you “Provide Evidence Based Resources,” as well as to whom you would provide these resources and how the recipients are selected.

  1. “Work with elected officials to strengthen laws.”

The history of laws related to the medical condition of addiction in the United States is one of stigmatizing and punishing rather than freeing people afflicted with this condition from punitive approaches, social exclusion and moral condemnation.

  • ”What specific laws do you want strengthened and why, and how would these specific laws help remove the harmful stigma of people with the condition of addiction, or for that matter, dependence which has them regarded as criminals at worst, outcasts at best?”

* Do you pay Lobbyists? If so, how are their efforts measured? Can you name those Lobbyists?

  1. “Support all Americans who have been touched by this disease.”

Of all your goals and objectives, we find this the most troubling. It is so vague that it sounds meaningless.

  • How exactly do you plan to “support” all Americans who have been touched by this disease?

  1. Lastly, your primary stated goal is to ‘end addiction’.

Are you God? Or Sisyphus? Ending the existence of a chronic medical condition with a 50-60% genetic component is the realm of research scientists, most specifically those that deal with conditions with a high genetic component such as diabetes, asthma, heart disease and addiction,

  • Do the funds raised go directly to the scientific study of the genetic factor, further research regarding the dysfunction of the brain’s limbic system, or other branches of research?

If so, please provide the names of the research institutes or scientists to whom these monies are donated. If not, how exactly do you plan to achieve the goal of eradicating a primarily genetic based chronic medical condition?

We are individuals who have experienced the condition of addiction first hand, and as addiction/recovery professionals, we are relied upon by over 10,000 thousand recovery counselors, treatment centers, and therapists each week to bring them accurate, reliable information and analysis of primary issues. Your prompt answers to our few basic questions will be of significant value in giving us a clearer understanding of your organization, its mission and accomplishments. It is important to use evidence based decision making when deciding which non-profits to support by donation and/or endorsement, as well as advising our subscribers of those about which we have serious concerns.

When can we expect a response to this inquiry?

Thank you in advance for your kind cooperation in our efforts to more fully understand Shatterproof.

Burl R. Barer
Editor, Investigations and Analysis
Addiction/Recovery e-Bulletin®