I started doing some research into why AA seems to be the rehab of choice for the court system in the US.
When I googled "deviant reality", the search engine led me to these links.
So far, I haven't been able to study everything I found, but there appears to be an initiate on the part of our executive leaders to promote Religious organizations involved in rehabilitation by assisting them in procuring government funding for their efforts.
I am uncertain of the legal and ethical ramifications of this development.
[b:e18ece4396]On the surface it seems to be a positive development, seemingly intended to relieve the public's financial burden, and provide increased access to treatment for the addict.
But when one looks at it in light of the enormous power already held by Alcoholics Anonymous in the rehabilitaion industry, the actual motivation behind this initiate is (to me at any rate) questionable.[/b:e18ece4396]
Message from Mr. Charles G. Curie, Administrator
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Our nation’s faith-based and community-based providers offer a life net to people in need of substance abuse and mental health services. For this reason SAMHSA has worked hard to strengthen our collaborations with our other Federal partners and our partners at the State and local levels. Solid partnerships built on common ground mean more Americans will get the services they need. One example of this kind of partnership is the [b:e18ece4396]Access to Recovery Program[/color:e18ece4396][/b:e18ece4396]. Access to Recovery is designed to accomplish three main objectives, long-held by the field, policy makers, and legislators:
• It expands capacity by increasing the number and types of providers, including faith-based providers, who deliver clinical treatment and/or recovery support services.
• It requires grantees to manage performance, based on patient outcomes; and
• It allows recovery to be pursued through many different and personal pathways.
As there has been much attention paid in the legal arena to the tendency of our courts to limit referrals of addicts and alcoholics to 12 step centered treatment, I'm not convinced that the purpose of this initiative is in reality providing access to a[b:e18ece4396] variety[/b:e18ece4396] of treatment models at all.
[b:e18ece4396]It seems to me to be an attempt on the part of the President to increase utilization of faith-based treatments, rather than the opposite.[/b:e18ece4396]
Undoubtedly limited government finances are driving this movement towards promoting the use of charitable, often [b:e18ece4396]religious[/b:e18ece4396], organizations for treatment of substance abuse, as it reduces the tax burden.
However, encouraging such organizations to apply for government funding would seem to contradict this, wouldn't it?
Increased government funding for religion-based rehabilitation services would not be a savings to the public after all, but merely a shuffling of existing funds.
[b:e18ece4396]It might ultimately result in an increase of financial burden on the public[/b:e18ece4396].
[b:e18ece4396]I would be very interested in seeing whether or not the organization of AA,[/b:e18ece4396](which has a stated policy of being self-supporting)[b:e18ece4396], is being targeted by this initiative, and whether they are now or will be in the future an applicant for these funds[/b:e18ece4396].
What is ATR?
ATR is a competitive discretionary grant program funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Substance Abuse Treatment, which will provide vouchers to clients for purchase of substance abuse clinical treatment and recovery support services. Goals of the program are to expand capacity, support client choice, and [b:e18ece4396]increase the array of faith-based and community-based providers for clinical treatment and recovery support services[/b:e18ece4396].
White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives
White House Faith-Based & Community Initiative?(PDF version of this brochure coming soon)
Faith-based and community organizations (FBCOs) have a long tradition of helping Americans in need and together represent an integral part of our nation’s social service network. Yet, all too often, the Federal government has put in place complicated rules and regulations preventing FBCOs from competing for funds on an equal footing with other organizations. President Bush believes that besides being inherently unfair, such an approach can waste tax-payer dollars and cut off the poor from successful programs. [b:e18ece4396]Federal funds should be awarded to the most effective organizations—whether public or private, large or small, faith-based or secular[/b:e18ece4396]—and all must be allowed to compete on a level playing field.
[b:e18ece4396]Focus of the Initiative[/b:e18ece4396]
• Identifying and eliminating barriers that impede the full participation of FBCOs in the Federal grants process.
• Ensuring that Federally-funded social services administered by State and local governments are consistent with equal treatment provisions.
• Encouraging greater corporate and philanthropic support for FBCOs' social service programs through public education and outreach activities.
• Pursuing legislative efforts to extend charitable choice provisions that prevent discrimination against faith-based organizations, protect the religious freedom of beneficiaries, and preserve religious hiring rights of faith-based charities.
The underlying premise of the President’s Initiative is that a more open and competitive Federal grant-making process will increase the delivery of effective social services to those whose needs are greatest. Thus, Federal agencies have successfully undertaken a variety of measures to do this, including:
• Making information more accessible
• Providing training and technical assistance
• Broadening program eligibility
• Changing regulations
• Streamlining grant applications
• Focusing on the unique needs of grassroots organizations; and
• Eliminating preferential treatment for existing and former grantees
[b:e18ece4396]White House Conferences[/b:e18ece4396]
The White House is hosting a series of regional conferences and targeted workshops to continue its support for the work of effective faith-based and community social service programs. The events will provide participants with information about the government grants process and available funding opportunities, an overview of the legal responsibilities that come with the receipt of Federal funds and various grant writing tutorials. The conferences will also provide an opportunity to inform State and local officials about equal treatment regulations and other central elements of the Faith-Based and Community Initiative.
The conferences are supported by the Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Education, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, Housing and Urban Development, Justice, Labor, and Veterans Affairs, the Small Business Administration, and the Agency for International
The White House Office has published several written resources to assist grassroots groups in navigating the Federal grants system. These documents include Federal Funds for Organizations That Help Those In Need (a catalog of Federal grant opportunities), Guidance to Faith-Based and Community Organizations on Partnering with the Federal Government (a guide to the legal responsibilities associated with the receipt of Federal funds), and Protecting the Civil Rights and Religious Liberty of Faith-Based Organizations (a booklet which outlines the protection of religious hiring rights).
US Department of Health and Human Services
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Center for Substance Abuse Protection
[b:e18ece4396]Theories and Models for Health Communications[/b:e18ece4396]
[b:e18ece4396]Using Theories and Models[/b:e18ece4396]
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) Making Health Communications Work (2002), “sound health communication development should draw upon theories(1) and models that offer different perspectives on the intended audiences and on the steps that can influence their change. No single theory dominates health communication because health problems, populations, cultures, and contexts vary. Many programs achieve the greatest impact by combining theories to address a problem.” In planning, developing, implementing, and evaluating the Too Smart To Start Initiative, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration is using a comprehensive health communications approach that is guided by various behavioral theories and models.
[b:e18ece4396]Cultivation Theory [/b:e18ece4396](Gerbner, Gross, Morgan, and Signorielli, 1980, 1986).
[b:e18ece4396]According to this theory, repeated, intense exposure to deviant definitions of “reality” in the mass media leads to perception of the deviant reality as normal. The result is a social legitimization of the reality as depicted in the mass media, which can influence behavior[/b:e18ece4396].
I wonder if anyone in the White House has considered the use of Court-ordered referrals (of addicts and alcoholics) to faith-based 12 step programs in this light?