• Need-to-Know News: March 9, 2012

    March 09, 2012

    Headlines on Our Issues

    State

    • A report released this week by the New York Civil Liberties Union calls on state policymakers to better protect patient privacy in the development of electronic networks.
    • After Mayor Bloomberg called last year for new York City youths in the state juvenile justice system to be kept close to home, Governor Cuomo included a measure to make that change in his budget plan for the 2013 fiscal year.
    National

    • Ten Percent of American adults report being in recovery from substance abuse or addiction, according to survey data released this week by the Partnership at Drugfree.org and the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS).
    • Law Professor Michelle Alexander's book “The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness,” a best seller since reissued as a paperback in January, is provoking discussion across the nation about the collateral consequences of the "war on drugs."
    • More than half of the inmates in Texas' youth prisons need mental health care, according to state criminal justice officials calling for better early intervention.
    • Study results released yesterday show that in the areas hardest hit by HIV, the disproportionate affect on black women is even greater than previously thought.
    • Even as California's Fresno County has spent millions of dollars increasing jail capacity and officer rolls, no drug treatment or mental-health services has been added.
    • In Missouri, one of nine states where a felony drug conviction means a lifetime ban from qualifying for food stamps, a movement is under way to end the ban.
    • The director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy joined officials from Kentucky and Florida in calling for better cooperation between states in fighting prescription drug abuse.
    • A year since the signing of the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, the use of electronic health records among office-based physicians has nearly doubled to 34 percent.

    From Our Partners

    • Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer is teaming up with reentry advocates to present "Women & Reentry--Coming Home: Struggling Toward Success," a community dialogue, on March 17. For more information and to RSVP, contact Mr. Stringer's office at events@manhattanbp.org or (212) 669-4462.
    • "Removing the Bars: TAKE ACTION 2012" is happening March 23-24 at Columbia University. See more on the event and register online here.
    • Be sure to read the recent Star Ledger column by the Fortune Society's Glenn Martin advocating for a New Jersey bill that would allow qualified job-seekers with criminal records to work in restaurants that serve alcohol on the premises.
    • The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration is now accepting nominations for the 2012 Voice Awards, honoring leaders in educating the public about mental health and/or substance use disorders. Follow this link to read more or make a nomination; the deadline is March 30.