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Special Focus:  Mental Health, Substance Abuse, & Terrorism

DEA Congressional Testimony On Marijuana (03-27-01)

Here is the official testimony of the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) regarding the decision to continue marijuana as a Schedule I Controlled Substance.  There is an excellent description of the drug scheduling system, it's legal basis in legislation, and the procedures for scheduling and changing the scheduling of control substances.  <Go To DEA Internet File>

ONDCP Pulse Check:  Mid-Year 2000 (Posted 04-11-01)

The following is a mid-Year progress report on the effectiveness of the War On Drugs.  The report was developed by Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP).  The information in this reports speaks for itself as to the effectiveness of our War On Drugs Policy and the need to look to a Public Health Addiction Policy as a more effective strategy for dealing with our national epidemic of drug addiction.

NIDA Prescription Drug Report (04-11-01)

NIDA reports that the nonmedical abuse of prescription drugs - especially opioids, central nervous system (CNS) depressants, and stimulants - remains a serious public health concern because when abused they can alter the brain's activity and lead to dependence and possibly addiction.  An estimated 4 million people aged 12 and older used prescription drugs for nonmedical reasons in 1999; almost half of that number reported using prescription drugs nonmedically for the first time in the previous year. We would like to reverse this trend by increasing awareness and promoting additional research on this topic.  A recent national survey of primary care physicians reported that 46.6 percent of physicians find it difficult to discuss prescription drug abuse with their patients. (This is consistent with a growing trend to crack down on prescription drug abuse by expanding the failed War On Drugs Strategy into the control of prescription drug use.)

Poll On Bush's Faith-based Initiative (04-11-01)

Find out how Americans feel about George Bush's Faith-based Initiative.  Here's a summary of the most recent findings of the largest poll done to date.

Guidelines for Safe Drinking (04-10-01):  A Summary By Terence T. Gorski

According to Dr. Mary Dufour A standard drink equals: 12 ounces of regular beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of 80 proof distilled spirits.  A safe or moderate level of drinking (i.e. how much a person can drink without being at risk of incurring negative biopsychosocial consequences) is no more than two drinks per day for men and no more than one drink per day for women.  The people who should not drink at all for health reasons are:  (1) Children & Adolescents;  (2) People who cannot or will not keep their consumption within the "safe levels" described above;  (3) Women who are pregnant or trying to conceive; (4) People who plan to drive or engage in other activities requiring skill or psychomotor coordination;  (5)  People using prescription or over-the-counter medication that adversely interacts with alcohol;  (6) People who are in recovery from alcoholism or other forms of substance abuse or have a past history of serious problems related to the use of alcohol or other drugs; and (7) People who have family members with serious alcohol or drug problems should be especially careful to limit their consumption to safe levels and to stop all drinking if the safe levels are exceeded consistently for any reason.

News Scan (04-10-01)

The following research summaries were scanned from the NIDA website:  
(1) Study Finds That Methamphetamine Use Can Increase Stroke-Related Brain Damage;  
(2) Study Examines Link Between Dopamine Receptor and Curtailing Cue-induced Craving 
     for Cocaine;  
(3) Nicotine Causes Degeneration in Brain's "Weak Link" for Addictive Drugs; 
(4) Brain Hormone That Helps Regulate Food Intake May Dampen Drug Craving: Finding
     Exploits Possible Relationship Between Addiction and Eating Disorders

Women Offender Bibliography (03-30-01)

Here's the most recent annotated bibliography on Women's offenders from NIAAA's ETOH data base.

Medical Use of Marijuana – Public Health vs. Criminal Justice Approach (03-29-01) 
A News Analysis By

It would be tragic if we began arresting and prosecuting terminally ill patients undergoing chemotherapy for using marijuana to seek symptom relief. Determining if marijuana can be an effective medication is a public health issue, not a criminal justice problem.  Patients with severe symptoms need options that work, not restrictions that can turn them into criminals and put them in prison. They need help from medical and behavioral health professionals, not threats from criminal justice professionals.  This news analysis explains why addiction and mental health professionals should be heavily involved in the issue of the medical use of marijuana.

Plan Colombia: What’s The Real US Agenda? (03-24-01):  A News Analysis By Terence T. Gorski

Plan Columbia which provides extensive military aide to the Columbian Army to fight the drug war is Internationally controversial and is not strongly supported within Columbia.  There are strong indicators that this money would be better spent by implementing drug courts and expanding the community-based drug treatment programs needed to support them.

Antiwar Demonstrators Protest US Aid To Colombia (03-24-01): A News Analysis By Terence T. Gorski

About 100 American anti-war activists from Witness for peace demonstrated against U.S. Military Aide to Columbia’s Drug War.  In a demonstration reminiscent of Viet Nam the protestors asserted that Plan Columbia funding would be better spent in funding addiction treatment programs within the united States.  The War On Drugs and supply reduction programs like Plan Columbia are draining critical funds from community-based addiction and mental health programs that are proven to be more effective in reducing illicit drug abuse.

Stopping Drug Use During Pregnancy – Enforcement vs Treatment (03-22-01)
An Article By Terence T. Gorski

A recent Supreme Court ruling decided that hospital workers cannot constitutionally test maternity patients for illegal drug use without their consent for the purpose of alerting the police to a crime.  This decision made it clear that pregnant women who are suspected of using illegal drugs that might harm their unborn baby still retain their civil rights.  The good news is that we can help drug abusing pregnant women, their unborn children, and their families without violating their civil rights.  Medical intervention programs that identify and motivate pregnant women to get substance abuse treatment work better than enforcement programs that entrap pregnant women into arrest and prosecution for drug law violations.  Medical intervention programs can be set up by training obstetricians to diagnose substance abusing patients, intervening in their addiction, and coordinating prenatal care with appropriate substance abuse treatment.  Outcomes are best when these medical intervention programs are supported by community-based treatment and sober residential centers that provide treatment for the women during their pregnancy and for the a period of three to six months after delivery. 

Student Assistant Programs vs. School Drug Testing (03-22-01) an Article By Terence T. Gorski

Is it a good idea to rely on random drug testing to reduce the incidence of drug abuse in our schools.  A recent ruling by an Oklahoma Appeals Court may force us to rethink the answer.  They found that randomly drug testing all kids in extra-curricular activities violates the Fourth Amendment's protection against unreasonable searches.  This isn’t necessarily bad.  Well designed Student Assistance Programs (SAP's) are far more effective than drug testing in preventing and helping kids who have problems with alcohol and drugs.

Get the Latest Information On Club Drugs From DAWN (Posted 03-20-01)

Get the latest information on club drug from the Drug Abuse Warning Network.  Don't miss a related article entitled The Date Rape Drug (GHB) Revisited (03-11-01) A Drug Update By <Joseph E. Troiani, Ph.D.>

The ETOH Database (Posted 03-20-01)

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) has one of the best and easiest to use databases for developing annotated bibliographies and alcoholism and related areas.  You can also access a variety of other useful databases.  Learn much and prosper!

Counselor Certification Standards By State & Country (Posted 02-20-01)

This database, which is part of the National Addiction Technology Transfer Center (NATTC), contains basic information on a variety of state, national, and international bodies that offer credentialing for drug and alcohol counselors.

Review The New Relapse Prevention Therapy (RPT) Course Descriptions & Related Material (03-20-01) 

The Relapse Prevention Therapy (RPT) 5-day Course has been redesigned.  
Check out the training agenda and related course materials including the Master RPT Treatment Plan and a new Gorski article entitled Understanding the RPT Clinical Process.

An Overview of Denial Management Counseling (DMC) (03-20-01) - An Article By Terence T. Gorski

This article provides a concise summary of Denial Management Counseling (DMC).  It's a great article to forward to your colleagues.

New Book On Women Offenders (03-13-01)

Check out this new book by correspondent Katherine van Wormer of the College of Social & Behavioral Sciences at the University of Northern Iowa published a new book entitled: Counseling Female Offenders and Victims -- A Strengths-Restorative Approach.

Implementing Prop 36 - A Message From Judge Steven V. Manly (03-13-01)

See what Judge Steven V. Manly, President of the California Association of Drug Court Professionals (CADCP) and a nationally recognized leader in the judicial management of nonviolent drug offenders has to say about the implementation of California's proposition 36.  

OxyContin Update (03-12-01): News Analysis By Terence T. Gorski

Check out this analysis of today's Associated Press news release on OxyContin Abuse and Addiction.  Be sure to note the heavy role of drug enforcement and the absence of drug treatment representation.

Trend Watch (03-12-01)

Check out this new feature of  I will be updating my trend forecasts addiction, mental health, and criminal justice and the observations and analysis of events upon which those forecasts are based.

Effective Treatment for Drug and Alcohol Problems: What Do We Know? (Posted 03-11-01)

Helen Annis has identified five key factors that affect the outcome of substance abuse treatment that are supported in the scientific outcome literature. 

Sentencing Children As Adults: The Position of Terence T. Gorski (03-11-01)

Should children be tried in adult courts and sentenced to adult prisons?  Gorski doesn't believe that they should.  This position paper explains why.

Lionel Tate Sentenced To Life Without Parole For Murder Committed At Age 12 (03-11-01)

At age 12, Lionel Tate killed a girl of six while playing games with her that emulated the professional wrestlers he considered to be real-life heroes.  Should he have been tried as adult?  Should he be sentenced for life without parole to an adult prison?.

The Date Rape Drug (GHB) Revisited (03-11-01)
A Drug Update
<By Joseph E. Troiani, Ph.D.>

Get the most recent information on the controversial date-rape drug GHB from Dr. Troiani, A CENAPS Consultant, mental Health & Addiction Program Manager, and naval intelligence officer specializing in drug trafficking and antis-terrorism operations.

Drug Update:  Heroin – The Scourge Continues (03-11-01)
A Drug Update
  <By Joseph E. Troiani, Ph.D.>

Get the most recent information about the growth in heroine use from  from Dr. Troiani, A CENAPS Consultant, mental Health & Addiction Program Manager, and naval intelligence officer specializing in drug trafficking and antis-terrorism operations .  New and stronger heroine is hitting the streets at some of the lowest prices yet.  Expect to seeing growing number of emergency room visits and treatment program admissions for problems related to heroine addiction.

Thailand Has A Major Drug Abuse Crisis (03-11-01)
A News Summary By Terence T. Gorski

The Thailand Government is developing plans to intensify their war on a drugs as the result of growing problems with addiction and drug dealing.  The plan will involve supply reduction with the use of military and police tactics.  Demand reduction with prevention and treatment efforts was not discussed.  There were no representatives of prevention or treatment at the meeting.

Prop 36 - Recommendation of the Administrative Office of the Courts (03-09-01)

Here are the new recommendations for the judicial implementation of California's Proposition 36 developed by Proposition 36 Implementation Workgroup Administrative Office of the Courts
Trial Courts Program Division on February 28, 2001. A thank you goes to Judge Manley of the California Drug Court Association for providing this information.

Defining Drug Courts: The Key Components (03-08-01)

The Drug Court Standards Committee of the national Association of Drug Court Professionals published these guidelines for drug court implementation in January of 1997.  They form the basis of the best practice standards for drug court implementation.  Critical information for implementing California prop 36 and other programs of drug law reform calling for treatment instead of punishment for drug offenders.

Hot New Links (03-08-01)

Here are some hot new links to addiction, mental health and criminal justice resources

Prop 36 Program Certification Standards (03-06-01)

Here's a link to the program certification standards that are required of drug treatment programs applying for funding under California's Proposition 36.

Depression & Addiction - Fact Sheet (03-05-01) 

Learn the most important facts about depression and addiction.

Oxycotin Abuse (03-02-01)
A News Summary by Terence T. Gorski

There are growing indicators that the prescription narcotic Oxcycotin, usually prescribed to cancer patients, is being abused in small communities in five rural states.  The drug is injected and reportedly gives a heroine-like high.  It has a high risk of death by overdose. 

WA State HB On Faith-based Programs

Washington State House Bill 1252 calls for the establishment of a simple procedure for faith-based programs to apply for an exemption from state program licensure requirements for chemical dependency treatment programs.  Read Terry Gorski's summary and review the proposed legislation. 

N.Y. Reconsiders Tough Drug Laws (02-22-01): 
A News Summary By Terence T. Gorski

The future of New York State Governor Pataki's efforts to soften the New York State Drug Laws is uncertain because law-and-order legislators won't soften the punishment for drug offenses and some liberal lawmakers want the reforms to go further and won't compromise.  This is bad news for the  21,000 imprisoned non-violent drug offenders and their families.  So far the Professional Addiction Organizations in New York State have not published their position.

Post Incarceration Syndrome (PICS) and Relapse By Terence T. Gorski (02-23-01)

This article describes the symptoms of the Post Incarceration Syndrome (PICS) that contribute to relapse and recidivism in many released inmates.  The symptoms are described and the implications for communities and addiction and mental health treatment professionals are discussed.

Adolescent Cannabis Study (02-19-01)

The Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) has published the results of a comprehensive multi-site research study on the treatment of adolescents with marijuana problems.  

Washington State Drug Law Reform (02-15-01)

Washington State is considering changes in its drug laws that will reduce the penalties for drug crimes and place more emphasis on treatment and prevention programs.  These changes are based upon the observation that past drug laws have placed too much emphasis on enforcement and not enough emphasis on prevention and treatment.  The result has been that drugs are more available, more potent and less expensive than they've ever been before.  This proposed legislation is based upon the belief that a more balanced approach will be more effective.

Future Of Drug Reform Under Bush (02-07-01)

President George W. Bush has made no official statement about his policy on drug control.  Under his leadership as Governor, Texas shifted from a heavy focus on treatment to a strong focus on enforcement.  John Ashcroft, Bush's new attorney general who will shape national drug law enforcement, is a strong believer in enforcement over treatment.  In the area of drug policy. The American people seem to disagree with it's leaders.  According to a 1998 Harvard School of Public Health report, 78 percent of Americans believe anti-drug efforts have failed, with 58 percent stating that after five years of increased anti-drug spending, the nation's drug problems have not improved. 

Genetics, Addiction, & The Human Genome (2-12-01)
A News Summary By Terence T. Gorski

The New York Times reports on applications of the new human genome research that confirms the biopsychosocial nature of addiction and antisocial behavior.  This research creates the possibility of new genetically-based medications that could enhance, but probably not replace, psychological and social treatments for addiction and criminality.

Gorski's Position On Implementing California's Proposition 36 (2-11-01)

Public pressure is building to change how nonviolent drug offenders are treated within the criminal justice system.  California's Proposition 36 has mandated that nonviolent drug offenders be assigned to community-based treatment instead of prison.  Here's how and why addiction professionals should get involved.

Gorski's Review Of Texas Faith-based Programs (2-6-01) 

President George W. Bush wants to remove the barriers that keep faith-based programs from providing substance abuse treatment.  He plans to model his national policy along the lines of the Texas Faith-based exemptions implements while he was governor.   How  does  the Texas faith-based initiative work?  Should it be a model for the nation?

Hoffman On The Effectiveness Of Faith-based Programs (2-5-01)

Gorski's Position On Faith-based Programs (2-2-01)

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Special Focus:  Mental Health, Substance Abuse, & Terrorism

Terry Gorski and Other Members of the GORSKI-CENAPS Team are Available To Train & Consult On Areas Related To Recovery, Relapse Prevention, & Relapse Early Intervention

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