It was a Thursday evening in an intimate lecture hall at The New School for Social Research on west 11th street in Manhattan. The panel at the Bringing Communities Together meeting consisted of the most experienced and informative group of speakers I have had the pleasure of hearing. It provoked a valuable discussion among local New York parents, children, professionals and students. It was both productive and emotional, as is expected when you bring together such a diverse group of people. Ranging from mothers to retired police majors to harm reduction psychologists, the focus was the proposed and ideal education, supervision and treatment of young adults dealing with issues of drug misuse and addiction.
Our youth can be found in homes, schools, clinics, and prisons. It is of the utmost importance that moral and beneficial treatment be provided for them through each of these institutions. And that policy based in views of health, and not crime, is necessary to prevent the unfortunate traumas that are often incurred in our current system as a result of having problems with drugs.
I highly recommend attending the next public speaking engagement of each individual involved in this event, and learning more about the valuable work conducted by the organizations they represent, listed below.
– Daniel Raymond of Harm Reduction Coalition.
– Carol Katz Beyer of Families for Sensible Drug Policy.
– Barry Lessin, M.Ed, of Families for Sensible Drug Policy.
– Major Neill Franklin (Ret.) of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.
– Jerry Otero, MA, of Drug Policy Alliance.
– Tamara Oyola-Santiago, MA, MPH, at The New School.
– Andrew Tatarsky, Ph.D, of The Center for Optimal Living.