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No Easy Answers

March 18, 2008
by Gary Enos
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The problem of homelessness in New Orleans far outpaces that of any other U.S. city—Hurricane Katrina saw to that. And it is clear that any solutions imposed by policy leaders will have to account for much-needed addiction services that have been scarce since the storm. USA Today reported a local advocacy group's estimate that 4% of New Orleans' population is homeless, with many facing unmet needs related to substance use and mental illness. Many of the outreach centers that once addressed these issues in the homeless population remain shuttered. With talk that the city's public housing developments soon might be razed, this crisis in public health and welfare shows little sign of improving.



And unfortunately those that did receive housing often were given toxic trailers to call home.

Couldn't resist to comment on this topic after noticing only one was submitted. Since when do policy leaders account to anything? And to who, what, where and when ? I havn't heard one word about New Orleans, It's Homeless, Addiction Services or anything related to Katrina from any of the Presidential Candidates. NOT ONCE!!! I'll risk being diagnosed as Bi-Polar with a pinch of Grandeur and permanent residency in a fictional world ! But imagine this. Two National Certification Boards, each state also has Certification Boards with thousands of Certified Members, numerous AA/NA Groups, Catholic Charities, The Shriners, Rotary and Lions Clubs and an on-going list of Charities/Caring Groups (Did I mention Church Groups?). Can't the Certification Boards request their members to supply FREE Counseling? Can't NA Members provide meeting groups? Can't the Charity Groups PASS THE HAT? Please don't think, without the risk of hurting yourself ! Dare we say it can't be done ! IT'S BEEN DONE ! AND IN PLAIN VIEW ! A few weeks ago the news media reported that WALMART was suing an ex-employee for over $400,000. Forced into a Wheel-Chair, no Short-term memory, Husband recovering from Prostate Cancer that has two jobs, can lose his car, one son can't afford to go to College and 18 year old son killed in Iraq. WALMART refused to retreat the Law-Suit and was described by CNN's Jeffrey Tobin as "..always plays HARD BALL". And has even taken on Teamsters Unions! HOLD ON ! It just got better! Millions called and e.mailed WALMART, CNN and
other NEWS Centers blowing multiple gaskets (I'm missing a couple) and clogging the blood-less veins of WALMART'S Board with outrage and compassion (is compassion a bad word?) As a result WALMART retreated the law suit and will revise their employee Medical Coverage and Benefits Plans. The outpour of this NATION'S PEOPLE brought down GOLIATH a.k.a. WALMART!! And all it took were calls and e.mails. An experience that brought me to tears provoked by the pride of this country's people!! So, need-less to say but urgent to recognize, the wonderous things that "WE THE PEOPLE..." can do once united for a common good.


"The greatest punishment is for those that in a time of crisis, don't do anything". - Dante

Gary Enos


Gary Enos

Gary A. Enos has been the editor of Addiction Professional since its inception. He also...

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