State Representative Dan Miller will host a Substance Abuse Forum, entitled “Challenges to Recovery,” on November 29th from 12-6pm at St. Paul’s. This is a free event designed to specifically address some of the common hurdles people face when fighting addiction. This half day event will cover important topics over five sessions, and will have a Resource Fair full of information and opportunities for support & assistance in our area. Attendees do not have to attend all four sessions but are encouraged to register for any and all sessions that fit their interests.
Additionally, a Resource Fair will be open from 2-4pm. More information on the individual sessions and the event are listed below.
* As always, registration is appreciated but not required, however space will be limited.
Forum Session Information:
*list will be updated as panelists are confirmed
Session 1: "A Conversation on Combating the Opioid Epidemic across Pennsylvania" with Attorney General Josh Shapiro
This public health crisis is reaching a critical mass, with few signs of slowing down. Attorney General Josh Shapiro will give an overview on what his office has been doing to combat the heroin & opioid epidemic in Pennsylvania, as well as providing information on issues happening nationwide on this crisis.
Session 2: Hope for Families
• Dr. Dennis Daley - UPMC Health Plan, Substance Use Services | Sr. Clinical Director; University of Pittsburgh, School of Medicine | Professor of Psychiatry
• Domenic Marks - Bridge to Hope Family Support Group | Spokesperson and Member of the Advisory Board
Families often experience emotional turmoil and unique stresses associated with a loved one’s addiction. This program will provide information and hopeful personal insights about the impact of these problems and how families can find support from both inside and outside the family unit.
Session 3: Access to Treatment
• Jason Snyder - Department of Human Services | Special Assistant to the Secretary
• Fred Way - Pennsylvania Alliance of Recovery Residences (PARR) | Executive Director
• Carin Fraioli - Gateway Rehab | Vice President, Operations
• TBD - Allegheny County Bureau of Drug and Alcohol Services
Everyone who wants treatment should be able to get it, but unfortunately that is often not the case. Too many people are left waiting days in a hospital for a bed that never materializes, can't get insurance coverage for their recommended treatment levels, or are left in recovery houses that are anything but. In this session we will discuss the practical challenges that many people face in entering appropriate treatment options in PA and what we need to do to increase access.
Session 4: Kids in the Crosshairs
• Jacki Hoover - Allegheny County Children Youth and Families (CYF) | Assistant Deputy Director
• Ben Zuckerman - Allegheny County Bar Foundation Juvenile Court Project | Managing Attorney
• Lila Harris, J.D. - KidsVoice | Staff Attorney
• TBD - St. Clair Hospital
The numbers of children born to people struggling with addiction have risen precipitously, which has led to more children being raised by other family members or in traditional foster care. This has led to challenges all across the system, impacting retirees and county budgets alike while risking developmental delays in children and possible termination of parental rights. In this session we will take a look at the impact on the very young when one or more of their parents are dealing with addiction and how legal matters can be addressed in and out of CYF involvement.
Session 5: Crime and Recovery
• Hon. Alexander Bicket - Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas, Criminal Division | Judge
• Patrick Nightingale, Esq. - PKN Law | Criminal Defense Attorney, former Assistant District Attorney
• LaToya Warren - Allegheny County Dept. of Human Services | Assistant Deputy Director, Forensic Services
• James Sheets, Esq. - Criminal Defense Attorney, former Public Defender
Many law enforcement experts have proclaimed that we cannot arrest our way out of our current addiction crisis, so what other alternatives exist? In this session we will discuss the balance between public safety and rehabilitation and what we can do to improve outcomes for those caught in the criminal justice system while struggling with addiction. We will also talk about how a criminal record relating to drugs can impact job opportunities, housing, and other possibilities no matter how many years have passed since a relapse.
Support Services Resource Fair Exhibitors:
*list will be updated as exhibitors are confirmed
• Message Carriers of Pennsylvania
• Allegheny County Department of Human Services (DHS)
• Chartiers Center
• West Pennsylvania Alliance of Recovery Residences (PARR)
• resolve Crisis Services
• Gateway Rehab
• Family Links
• Outreach Teen and Family Services
• Nar Anon
• POWER – Pennsylvania Organization for Women in Early Recovery
• Freedom Healthcare Services
• Greenbriar Treatment Center
• Pinnacle Treatment Centers
• Footprints for Recovery