How should we respond to co-occurring addiction and racism? (Guest post by Alexa Johnson)

Alexa Johnson is a friend who is early in her career and reached out for my thoughts on some important questions she had been contemplating. She shared a written reflection on the issues involved and I encouraged her to turn it into a post. I admire her combination of conviction and willingness to keep asking … Continue reading How should we respond to co-occurring addiction and racism? (Guest post by Alexa Johnson)

Interview #9 – Bev Haberle Reflections on the Historic 2001 Recovery Summit in St. Paul, Minnesota, and the Start of the New Recovery Advocacy Movement

Forward: I have known Bev Haberle and her work for a long time. We are both from Eastern Pennsylvania and our paths crossed regularly over the years. I brought her staff into the residential facility I ran in the early 2000s to meet and engage our alumni. Bev served for many years as the Executive … Continue reading Interview #9 – Bev Haberle Reflections on the Historic 2001 Recovery Summit in St. Paul, Minnesota, and the Start of the New Recovery Advocacy Movement

Tackling drug deaths: let’s add this in

Healthy social networks (the people we connect with) are protective. Improving social networks brings gains in physical and mental health. In 2010, Julianne Holt-Lunstad and her colleagues undertook an impressive meta-analysis (massive review of the evidence available) to see how social relationships influenced mortality. They found a protective effect for those with stronger social relationships. In fact, for this group there was a 50% increased likelihood of survival.

Drug deaths in Scotland: hope on the horizon?

Harm reduction interventions need to be widely available, accessible, delivered efficiently and proactively and evaluated and improved. Harm reduction services also need to have porous borders with treatment and recovery services and have hope embedded in the form of peers in recovery working within teams. A recovery-oriented system of care sees interventions not in silos, but in a continuum with the individual’s needs at the centre and the person on a journey. The person's goals, not the professional's goals (which can be at odds) should be paramount.

Further Homage to Recovery Ancestors (Bill White, Chris Budnick, and Boyd Pickard)

This post is cross-posted at williamwhitepapers.com When I remember the thousands who died, many whose stories were never recorded in history, I bow my head. And when my wailing is done, I get up and carry on, not in my name, but in theirs….When you know your history, you know your value. You know the … Continue reading Further Homage to Recovery Ancestors (Bill White, Chris Budnick, and Boyd Pickard)

“full recovery or amplified recovery” — toward typologies of recovery?

A version of this post was originally published in April 2019. Recently proposed definitions of recovery could be characterized as defining it downward (or expanding the boundaries outward). I've expressed concern that these proposed boundaries are so broad that most people who currently self-identify as in recovery will not feel a shared identity with the … Continue reading “full recovery or amplified recovery” — toward typologies of recovery?

What we miss when we focus on opioid treatment and recovery

A version of this post was originally published in September 2019. Fortunately, there's been growing concern that advocates, policymakers, and media have too narrowly focused on the opioid crisis. Up to this point, it hasn't reached the level of media coverage. USA Today is one of the first to publish an article that explores the … Continue reading What we miss when we focus on opioid treatment and recovery

Interview #8 – Johnny Allem Reflections on the Historic 2001 Recovery Summit in St. Paul, Minnesota, and the Start of the New Recovery Advocacy Movement

Forward: Johnny Allem has a long and honorable history in service to the recovery community. In the preparation for this interview, I learned of a connection between my organization, PRO-A and Johnny I had not known about. PRO-A was formed in 1998 to bring together the statewide recovery community of Pennsylvania. In those early days, … Continue reading Interview #8 – Johnny Allem Reflections on the Historic 2001 Recovery Summit in St. Paul, Minnesota, and the Start of the New Recovery Advocacy Movement

Does morality have a place in discussions of addiction recovery?

A version of this post was originally published in June 2020. A question has been on my mind for a while--what is the place of morality or moralizing language in addiction and recovery? Not moral? Bill White has been one of the most influential recovery advocates of the last quarter-century. One could argue that, over … Continue reading Does morality have a place in discussions of addiction recovery?