Author Archives: Bob Curley

Nice Naltrexone Success Story

Following up on the recent National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP) meeting in the Hub, the Boston Herald has a nice article attesting to the effectiveness of naltrexone treatment. …

Tobacco Terrorism

The New York Post is warning that another 9-11 could be coming unless we cut cigarette taxes. Writer Deroy Murdock says that Islamic terror groups are getting money by smuggling cigarettes from low-tax states like Virginia to high-tax ones like New York. Ergo, New York’s tobacco tax should be frozen or cut, says Murdock. Here’s a better idea: raise Virginia’s tobacco tax in the name of fighting terrorism. …

What’s the Drinking Age, Again?

Is there really a teenager in America who is not aware of the fact that 21 is the legal drinking age? I ask because it seems like every so-called underage-drinking prevention campaign involving the alcohol industry is some variation on the theme of, "Hey kids, remember, if you’re not 21, you can’t drink." You know, the kind of message that’s always effective with kids -- telling them they’re not old enough to do something. …

Washington Enacts New Overdose Prevention Law

Tomorrow (June 10) is the effective date of a new law in Washington state that supporters hope will save the lives of overdose victims. The state’s new "911 Good Samaritan Law" provides witnesses to drug overdoses with limited immunity from prosecution if they call for help ?- a policy change that public-health experts say can make drug users more willing to seek aid for overdose victims. …

Health Association Vet Tapped to Head ASAM

The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) will have a new chief executive starting July 1: Penny S. Mills will replace the retiring Eileen McGrath as ASAM’s executive vice president, the addiction specialty group announced June 4. …

ONDCP Seeks Teens to Influence ’Above the Influence’

The White House says that teens "understand and embrace" the Above the Influence (ATI) brand -- the peer-oriented ads promulgated by the National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign. But the campaign’s supporters want to focus the ads more tightly to local needs, and is calling on communities to engage teens in the "Influence Project" to "share their insights about the positive and negative influences they see around them and their approach to ’staying above it.’" …

Laura Nissen to Depart Reclaiming Futures

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Reclaiming Futures project is beginning to transition from the relatively secure world of foundation funding to the more arduous task of seeking multiple sources of support, but will have to find its way without the stewardship of longtime national program director Laura Nissen. Nissen announced on June 7 that she plans to step down in May 2011 once a successor is in place, citing a desire to "concentrate on teaching and research in my role as a faculty member at the School of Social Work at Portland State University." …

JPI Says Prison Populations Can Be Safely Trimmed

A new report from the Justice Policy Institute urges states to use "innovative and evidence-based strategies" to safely and cost-effectively reduce their prison populations. JPI "found that increasing opportunities for parole and improving parole release decisions, improving parole supervision and ensuring access to support and treatment services are cost-effective means of cutting extraneous spending while maintaining public safety." The report is For Immediate Release: How to Safely Reduce Prison Populations and Support People Returning to Their Communities. …

SAMHSA’s Snapshot of Adolescent Drug Use and Related Problems

A new "day in the life" report from SAMHSA says that every day 508,000 adolescents aged 12-17 in the United States drink alcohol; 641,000 use illicit drugs; and more than 1 million smoke cigarettes. Also, 563,000 adolescents used marijuana, nearly 37,000 used inhalants, 24,000 used hallucinogens, 16,000 used cocaine and 2,800 used heroin, according to A Day in the Life of American Adolescents: Substance Use Facts Update, which is based on 2008 data. SAMHSA administrator Pamela S. Hyde, J.D. calls the findings "a wake up call about the extent to which our nation’s youth engage in risky behavior by using illegal and potentially dangerous substances everyday." I don’t know about that... …