Black-Owned Addiction Rehab CEO Requests Resources for Culturally Appropriate Substance Abuse Treatment
Systemic Racism Prevalent in Many Addiction Treatment Centers
By: Pivot Treatment and Wellness Center
The American Psychological Association (APA) has said that within the past five years, "27 million Americans reported dependence or misuse of illicit or prescription drugs. Despite relatively uniform rates of substance abuse among racial and ethnic populations, members of minority groups are most likely to experience barriers that impede their ability to access substance abuse treatment."
Young Williams' initial efforts to engage congressional leaders and caucuses have been unsuccessful. "We had productive initial conversations, wherein leaders acknowledged the disparity in addiction recovery resources, but no one has been willing to champion this cause," said Young Williams. Through follow-up correspondences with political leaders and corporations, Young Williams is asking that dollars (from the government and large for-profit and not-for-profit corporations)
Data indicates that inpatient and outpatient treatment is beneficial to recovery and quality of life improvement. Institutional allocation of recovery dollars, as done in the past, is not reaching black and brown communities. The 2020 Budget for Research & Investigation appropriated to the National Institute on Drug Abuse was set at $1,296,379,000 – an 8.7% decrease compared to 2019 – and while it lists priorities such as advancing basic science, developing medications, and translating evidence-based findings to improve addiction prevention and treatment, it does not mention minority communities.
Financial resources are also needed to provide diversity, equity and inclusivity training to the thousands of addiction treatment professionals throughout the country. "Very often, mothers of black young men ask if we have black therapists because they understand the need to have someone who personally understands the underlying emotional and psychological trauma experienced by many POC. At Pivot, we treat everyone, regardless of race, religion, gender or sexual orientation. We also have a curriculum and the staff to properly service people of color, which is not a universal truth in our industry," says Young Williams.
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