Dear Dkos Diarists
Yesterday I posted what I thought was a wonderful diary about opening a treatment center for women namely the Asbury House. It is a non profit treatment center exclusively for women that is desperately needed in the community where I live and work, in fact more communities could use such a treatment center and when our team gets this one off the ground then we should be able to open more in other communities or assist in opening more in other communities. For those of you who tipped and shared the diary yesterday; thank you so much! Sharing information is a powerful way to raise awareness.
However we did not receive a single donation. So I thought to myself why, especially since we’re a non profit? And the answer I came up with is maybe I need some statistics and more detailed information. So that’s what I’m going to do today I’m going to offer additional details and some statistics and references. I am not going to repeat what I said yesterday so please go back and read the diary if you missed it. I wouldn’t want to be accused of diary pimping even though I’m pimping for a good cause.
One population that we plan to serve is women veterans. Now I’ve seen a lot of press and lot of great words for how we support our troops and how we need to do better by them when they return but we also need to put the services in place and put our money out there not just our words. Yes there are veteran facilities that service returning veterans but they have a long way to go in addressing the substance addiction and co-occurring mental and behavioral health disorders that women need. Many VA hospitals are overcrowded, are near large urban areas and they do not factor in the needs of the family system of the veteran. Many communities have additional services for male veterans but do not have equivalent services in place for female veterans and our organization is in a community that requires additional services for women and women veterans.
One of the fastest growing drug problems in the United States including among military veterans is prescription drug addiction. Below is a link that discusses some recent findings regarding our returning soldiers and prescription narcotic dependence.
In fact according to the White House’s office of National Drug Control Policy the growing problem of prescription drug abuse in the United States has been classified as an epidemic by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. If you click on the link then look under topics.
This my friend is a political issue related to women that spans the spectrum of weakened communities, broken homes and damaged lives. The social costs are enormous. People can’t do much if they are numbed and drugged.
Research has shown that women are targeted more than men when it comes to advertising the benefits of prescription drugs (Steven, Andrade & Ruiz, 2009).
Research and studies have also shown that gender specific treatment for women specifically those that address cultural, parenting, family, untreated trauma and mental health issues are more likely to attract women to treatment, increase positive clinical outcomes, and prevent relapse (Greenfield, Cummings, & Gallop, 2010; Najavits, Rosier, Nolan, & Freeman, 2007; Stevens et al., 2009).
According to Stevens et al (2009) in 2005 there were 6.5 million women age 18 or older who met the criteria for the abuse and/or dependence for alcohol and illicit drugs; that statistic does not include abuse and/or dependence on prescription drugs!
The women in our communities need our help. I’m trying very hard with the help of a few other dedicated souls to do something about it in our community, won’t you please help? Also suggestions greatly appreciated!