Pain Medication: Cause/Effect

With the recent NY Times article on the depths of corruption at Perdue Pharma and their willingness to promote painkiller addiction for profit, I thought it would be interesting to show our visualization of the ‘legal’ drugs proscribed in Manhattan (the data does not break down any finer than this).

You can see that OxyCodone was the second most commonly administered drug, after methadone.

Cause. Effect.

The City: Complaints from Harlem of Mount Sinai’s planned clinic

GHC Protest At Mt. Sinai Meeting With Political Leaders, Mentioned In “The City “ – 092719

By Rachel Holliday Smith

On West 124th Street, Mount Sinai Hospital has been planning for more than a year to open a new health facility.

In its current form, the Mt. Sinai outpatient clinic, set for a late-2021 opening, would include primary and specialty care as well as mental health treatment for children, teens and adults.

On the block Mt. Sinai is eyeing, there are multiple methadone clinics, a sliding-scale health center and at least two homeless shelters.

The Greater Harlem Coalition was founded last year to fight the Mount Sinai facility and bring attention to the concentration of social and health services in East and Central Harlem as a problem.

The protesters’ message was clear: the neighborhood is already doing more than its fair share, and they shouldn’t have to shoulder more services.

On a map of the density of mental health programs the group compiled from state and city health data, Harlem is shaded dark gray. Their analysis found Harlem has just 5% of New York City’s population but 15% of its mental health programs.

Data from the state’s Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) obtained by the coalition through a Freedom of Information Law request shows that while 6.9% of people in New York City OASAS-certified treatment programs for opioid addiction are Harlem residents, nearly a fifth (19.1%) of opioid treatment programs are located there as well.

Shawn Hill, a co-founder of the Coalition told the crowd, “Every time you feel overburdened, every time you feel that it’s too much — you are absolutely correct. And we have the data to back that up,”

For full article clink here:

Postcard Party: Saturday, April 27, 2019

Notify your representative you are against the oversaturation of addiction facilities in Harlem.
Place: Greater Calvary Baptist Church
43-55 West 124 Street
New York, NY 10027

Please join Greater Calvary and other community stakeholders opposed to efforts to locate yet another drug treatment facility in Harlem. We value recovery services and programs, but Harlem is already oversaturated with drug treatment facilities—even though only 10% of the clientele served by these facilities live in Harlem!

We are just shy of 300 postcards for the first 3 months of this year, and are aiming for 500 cards by May 2019. Come help us. It takes a half hour to write 5 postcards and possibly make a world of difference.

Event: Postcard Party

Place: Greater Calvary Baptist Church
43-55 West 124 Street
New York, NY 10027

Date: Saturday, April 27, 2019
1pm– 3pm

What is Fair Share?

In 2017, NYC City Council wrote a report outlining the policy of even distribution—fair sharing—of public services, both beneficial and least desirable.

Communities of color and lower socioeconomic status, such as Harlem and East Harlem, have historically been the dumping ground for services unwanted in other communities.

It is time to distribute these services evenly throughout the city. These include drug treatment facilities, homeless shelters, halfway houses, mental health facilities, waste treatment facilities.

In the 1989 City Charter (Section 203) it was required of the City Planning Commission to adopt the following criteria:

to further the fair distribution of the burdens and benefits associated with city facilities, consistent with community needs for services and efficient and cost effective delivery of services and with due regard for the social and economic impacts of such facilities upon the areas surrounding the sites.

The fair share criteria guide was previously revised in 1998, when Rudy Giuliani was mayor.

We ask that our federal government representatives, Rep. Adriano Espaillat and Sen. Charles Schumer ensure that funding, such as that established to address the opioid epidemic, be used efficiently and effectively, by placing facilities where they are most needed, and that the facilities be evenly distributed.

Greater Harlem Coalition Town Hall

The Greater Harlem Coalition Town Hall on Thursday, March 28th, at 7 pm at The Greater Calvary Baptist Church, 55 W 124th St, New York, NY 10027 (between Lenox/5th).

The Greater Harlem Coalition will host a Town Hall meeting next week, on Thursday, March 28th, at 7pm at The Greater Calvary Baptist Church: 55 W 124th St, New York, NY 10027 (between Lenox/5th).

This meeting will have representatives from Mount Sinai who are proposing moving their opioid treatment programs from Morningside Heights (near Columbia University and recently constructed luxury housing) to West 124th Street between Lenox and Adam Clayton Powell (a site already overwhelmed by 3 methadone programs, homeless shelters, and HIV/AIDS healthcare facilities).  

This shift of opioid programs into our already oversaturated community will allow Mount Sinai to expand their ‘higher end’ medical services such as their Cardiac Care Center in Morningside Heights.  At the same time it will continue the red-lining of Harlem and East Harlem as New York’s opioid treatment hub for patients from all 5 boroughs and even the suburbs (note that 75% of the patients attending opioid programs in Harlem commute into our community from outside Harlem).

Mount Sinai is hoping to serve its authorized client load of 800 patients at the 124th St location.

The Greater Harlem Coalition firmly supports and respects the right of people struggling with addiction to get the services they need in the communities where they live.  However, the attempt by Mount Sinai to red-line our community as their dumping ground for substance abuse programs is unacceptable. If the opioid crisis is one that affects all Americans regardless of gender, class, race, and geography, why does Mount Sinai always want to site their opioid facilities in low-income communities of color?

We hope to see you at our meeting next Thursday.  We hope to hear your thoughts on this issue. And, we hope that Mount Sinai will listen to your voice.

Letter of Support: Inez Dickens on the Concentration of Addiction Services in Harlem

Save the date for Thursday, March 28th, 2019. The Greater Calvary Church, 124th Street between Mount Morris Park West and Lenox Avenue.

Assemblywoman Inez Dickens has written a strong letter opposing Mount Sinai’s attempt to move their opioid programs from Morningside Heights into Harlem.

We were particularly impressed with the strong language concerning Northern Manhattan being “inundated with similar service providers.” We are having an impact.  In particular, the Greater Calvary Church’s Postcard Project has really helped

You can read the entire letter below:

Inez Dickens Letter of Support Against the Concentration of Addiction Services in Harlem

Please save the date Thursday, March 28th, 2019 at 7pm at The Greater Calvary Church, West 124th Street between Mount Morris Park West and Lenox Avenue.

Come out and thank Assemblywoman Dickens for her support. We will explain to Mount Sinai that Harlem is already oversaturated with addiction treatment services. Morningside Heights should shoulder their fair share of these programs.

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