Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year I hop

Happy New Year I hope your with loved ones and are ready for an amazing 2010, I sure am.. Love, Ken

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Naomi Shoemaker (our

Naomi Shoemaker (our niece) is coming CA with her BF Jonas to visit us... Welcome to the both of you, looking forward to spending the time together...

Ken Seeley Intervent

Ken Seeley Intervention911

Friday, December 25, 2009

Dear Ken, From my fa

Dear Ken, From my family to yours, I just wanted to wish you happy holidays and thank you for your support of MADD. I hope your holiday is filled with family, friends, and joy. I had planned on leaving it at that, but earlier today, Senators Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey and Tom Udall of New Mexico introduced a bill that would require all states to require life-saving ignition interlock devices for all drunk driving offenders. Ignition interlocks prevent cars from being driven drunk (you can learn details here) and have been shown to make a significant dent in the almost 4000 lives taken at the hands of repeat drunk driving offenders each year. You can see some of the coverage here and if you'd like to let your senators know that you support this provision, you can send them an email here. But mostly I wanted to give you my best wishes during this special time of the year. Happy holidays, be safe, and we'll talk again in the new year! Happy holidays, Laura Dean-Mooney MADD National President PS. The holidays can be a tough time of year for those who have lost loved ones. If you would like to talk, MADD’s Victim Helpline is open even on Christmas and New Year’s at 877-MADD-HELP ( 877-623-3435 877-623-3435).

Monday, December 21, 2009

Dear Ken, From my fa

Dear Ken, From my family to yours, I just wanted to wish you happy holidays and thank you for your support of MADD. I hope your holiday is filled with family, friends, and joy. I had planned on leaving it at that, but earlier today, Senators Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey and Tom Udall of New Mexico introduced a bill that would require all states to require life-saving ignition interlock devices for all drunk driving offenders. Ignition interlocks prevent cars from being driven drunk (you can learn details here) and have been shown to make a significant dent in the almost 4000 lives taken at the hands of repeat drunk driving offenders each year. You can see some of the coverage here and if you'd like to let your senators know that you support this provision, you can send them an email here. But mostly I wanted to give you my best wishes during this special time of the year. Happy holidays, be safe, and we'll talk again in the new year! Happy holidays, Laura Dean-Mooney MADD National President PS. The holidays can be a tough time of year for those who have lost loved ones. If you would like to talk, MADD’s Victim Helpline is open even on Christmas and New Year’s at 877-MADD-HELP (877-623-3435).

Motorist killed by suspected drunk driver going over 120 mph

Motorist killed by suspected drunk driver going over 120 mph

Posted using ShareThis

Motorist killed by suspected drunk driver going over 120 mph

Motorist killed by suspected drunk driver going over 120 mph

Posted using ShareThis

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Virgin America has f

Virgin America has free internet for holidays.... I am on way back from Boston to LA... AHHHHHH Home...

Monday, November 30, 2009 Please send to your friends, this is season premiere 100 episode and my last one..

Sunday, November 29, 2009


A&E INTERVENTION Marathon Sunday 1pm-6pm Monday 11am-2pm & 5pm-10pm 7-8 Asa 8-9 Marci 9-10 NEW Linda Ken is Interventionist on. Season Premier 9pm Monday Linda.. Hope you get to see it and let me know what you think this is my last one, and I have to say I lost 40 lbs since. Hope you can tune in and hear from you..

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Love to hear 3 thing

Love to hear 3 things your grateful for on this Thanksgiving night? Mine are my recovery, my loved ones/family and work with helping others have a better life. How does it get better then that!!

Thursday, November 19, 2009


When people are under the influence of a substance (alcohol included) their perception of right and wrong is blurred. This woman in the story described below is obviously deep in her addiction. As funny as it may sound and foolish of a decision for her make, she is in desperate need of help.

While people are in their addiction inadvertently they will do things that are a cry out for help, some are ridiculous and some are life altering – some life ending. Whether this postal worker was an alcoholic or not, she hopefully is sitting in her bottom and the gift of recovery will be able to take place in her life.

Don’t read about your family member or yourself in the daily paper, make the decision to the take the first step towards a healthy and substance free life. If you know someone or are suffering from alcoholism, call us for a free consultation: 866-888-4911,

Get AP Mobile for your phone at
Police: Mail carrier found drunk, eating noodles
Story user rating:
Published: Yesterday

MARION, Iowa (AP) - Police in Marion and postal authorities are investigating the case of a mail carrier who was allegedly found drunk inside a residence while on the job. Police said the postal worker, 46, was charged with public intoxication Nov. 3 after she was found sitting on the kitchen floor of 95-year-old woman's house, eating leftover noodles from her refrigerator.

Police Lt. Steve Etzel said Tuesday that the woman apparently entered the home through an unlocked front door. He said she was in uniform and had mail and a mail-carrying bag with her.
The woman, a 17-year employee of the U.S. Postal Service, was taken to the Linn County Jail. Marion Postmaster Rick Leyendecker said the woman is currently on unpaid leave.
Information from: The Gazette,

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Anyone know how to g

Anyone know how to get tickets for the Lakers Game Dec. 29th??? My niece and BF are coming out from NY and I wanted to get great seats.. HELP...

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Back in LA... I weig

Back in LA... I weighed in this morning 206, which is 40lbs GONE... I love being thin... Have a way to get everyone there that wants to join.. And the best part it is FREE....

Friday, November 13, 2009

Great day in Chicago

Great day in Chicago, I just finished Jane Velez Mitchells show HLN tonight on addiction.. Thank you Jane.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Expanding Drug Treatment: Is US Ready to Step Up?

In a perfect world we would help addicts by sending them into treatment rather than incarcerating them. It is so sad when a person becomes institutionalized ruining their life; more often than not institutionalized addicts do not receive the treatment they need. Only to walk through life labeled a convict and owning their parole #, becoming what society labels them. This is a festering problem that definitely needs change.

Read this article I found:

Expanding Drug Treatment: Is US Ready to Step Up?

Published: November 9, 2009
Filed at 9:03 a.m. ET

NEW YORK (AP) -- Based on the rhetoric, America's war on drugs seems poised to shift into a more enlightened phase where treatment of addicts gains favor over imprisonment of low-level offenders. Questions abound, however, about the nation's readiness to turn the talk into reality.
The economic case for expanding treatment, especially amid a recession, seems clear. Study after study concludes that treating addicts, even in lengthy residential programs, costs markedly less than incarcerating them, so budget-strapped states could save millions.

The unmet need for more treatment also is vast. According to federal data, 7.6 million Americans needed treatment for illicit drug use in 2008, and only 1.2 million -- or 16 percent -- received it.

But the prospect of savings on prison and court costs hasn't produced a surge of new fiscal support for treatment. California's latest crisis budget, for example, strips all but a small fraction of state funding away from a successful diversion and treatment program that voters approved in 2000.

''It's easy to talk a good game about more treatment and helping people,'' said Scott Burns, executive director of the National District Attorneys Association. ''But it smashes head on into reality when they don't put their money where their mouth is.''
Money aside, the treatment field faces multiple challenges. At many programs, counselors -- often former addicts themselves -- are low-paid and turnover is high. Many states have yet to impose effective systems for evaluating programs, a crucial issue in a field where success is relative and relapses inevitable.

''Fifty percent of clients who enter treatment complete it successfully -- that means we're losing half,'' said Raquel Jeffers, director of New Jersey's Division of Addiction Services. ''We can do better.''

The appointment of treatment expert Tom McLellan as deputy director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy in April was seen as part of a shift of priorities for the drug czar's office.

McLellan said he sees greater openness to expanding treatment but also deep misunderstanding or ignorance about scientific advances in the field and the need to integrate it into the health care system.

Most Americans, he suggested, have an image of drug treatment formed from the movies -- ''cartoon treatment'' involving emotional group encounters -- and are unaware of a new wave of medications and other therapies that haven't gained wide use despite proven effectiveness
''For the first time, it can truly be said that we know what to do -- we know the things that work,'' he said. ''But do we have the economic and political willingness to put them into place? If we do, we'll see results.''

McLellan, insisting he's not ''a wild-eyed liberal,'' said expanding treatment wouldn't negate the war on drugs.

''Law enforcement is necessary, but it's not sufficient,'' he said. ''You need effective preventive services, addiction and mental health services integrated with the rest of medicine. You shouldn't have to go to some squalid little place across the railroad tracks.''
By federal count, there are more than 13,640 treatment programs nationwide, ranging from world-class to dubious and mostly operating apart from the mainstream health-care industry.
Dr. H. Westley Clark, director of the federal Center for Substance Abuse Treatment, said his agency wants states to develop better measurements of programs' performance.
''The data shows treatment saves money -- $1 spent to $4 or $7 saved,'' Clark said. ''If you're an altruist, making treatment available is a good thing. If you're a narcissist, it's a good thing -- you'd pay less in taxes.''

Treatment advocates are closely watching Congress, hoping the pending health care overhaul will expand insurance coverage for substance abuse programs. Recent federal data indicates that 37 percent of those seeking treatment don't get it because they can't pay for it -- and many land in prison.

The work force in drug treatment is, for the most part, modestly paid, with counselors often earning less than the $40,000 per year that it costs to keep an inmate in prison in many states.

Just landed in chill

Just landed in chilly Chicago.. Wish it was to see Oprah...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Going to speak at me

Going to speak at meeting tonight in Silver Lake, CA.... AT Center, thanks Gary...

Watch Jane Velez Mit

Watch Jane Velez Mitchell tonight on CNN HLN... She is having me on talking about addictions... Love her!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

In Palm Springs at i

In Palm Springs at intervention conference. With all the best in the field. Great to be with them..

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Parents Abusing Drugs

The disease of addiction affects everyone that is involved with the person or people using drugs/alcohol. When parents are deep into addiction they get careless and their diseased state of mind has no regard for their children. More often then not, the bottom for parents is devastating and their children suffer the most.

Helping someone who has children to overcome their addiction is a gift that keeps on giving. Read this story I found in the “Washing Post.” It is devastating that 4 adults would leave heroin in reach of a 5 month old baby; or even worse intentionally give a baby heroin. Unfortunately this story is common and until us as family members, friends or concerned people come together and fight the disease of addiction; this type of neglect and abuse will continue.

If you know someone who is putting their child at risk, we can help. When people are loaded with children in the house, fatal accidents are prone to happen and abuse is at its peak. This reality can be prevented by taking the first step to help them become the parents they are suppose to be. An intervention can save the life of a baby or young child; an intervention can put a family back together. / 866-888-4911

Va. parents charged with allowing baby to overdose on heroin

By Tom Jackman
Washington Post Staff Writer Wednesday, November 4, 2009
A Fairfax County couple has been arrested on charges of allowing its 5-month-old son to overdose on heroin. The baby recovered and was placed with other family members, Fairfax police said.

Police say they think that the baby, who was not mobile, was lying on the floor of his parents' rented townhouse as they and two friends were shooting heroin and that the baby "picked up a packet of heroin and put it in his mouth," Fairfax Officer Bud Walker said.
Court records indicate that the parents paid their babysitter in heroin.

The parents were arrested Thursday afternoon at their home on Loving Forest Court in the Newington Forest neighborhood of Springfield. The baby's mother, Marilyn Fischl, 36, was charged with felony child abuse and neglect. His father, Rafael Preston, 30, faces identical charges. Fischl was also charged with drug possession and unauthorized distribution of drug paraphernalia, and she was held in the Fairfax jail until Saturday, when she posted $10,000 bond. Preston posted bond and was released Thursday, according to jail records.
Fischl and Preston did not answer the door or respond to a message left at their residence Tuesday.

Fairfax Commonwealth's Attorney Raymond F. Morrogh said he could not comment on a pending case, but he noted, "It's always disturbing to think that people would use narcotics in the presence of a child of any age."

On July 14, Walker said, Fischl and Preston took the baby to the emergency room at Inova Fairfax Hospital. Hospital staff members became "suspicious as to why the baby was suffering" and contacted the county's Child Protective Services division, Walker said.

Social workers "took possession of the baby that day," Walker said. It is unclear how long the baby needed to be hospitalized. Fischl has at least two other young children who are also no longer in her care, Walker said.

The Fairfax police child abuse squad was not contacted until late July, Walker said, when toxicology reports were completed. Those found that the baby had tested positive for heroin. A search warrant affidavit written by Detective Darrin DeCoster said that Child Protective Services reported the case to police because the baby "was not mobile yet" and that child services suspected that "someone either intentionally gave the child a drug or he was accidentally poisoned."

DeCoster learned that in addition to Fischl and Preston, their friends Erin Flynn, 32, and Patrick Hall, 41, were at the townhouse July 14. Hall apparently had served as the infant's babysitter that day, DeCoster wrote, and Fischl "distributed heroin as payment for babysitting the victim in this case."

All four adults "consumed heroin in close proximity to the victim and recklessly left heroin and paraphernalia within reach of the child," DeCoster's affidavit says. "The child was able to wiggle around enough to get a hold of the heroin and subsequently ingested it. The result was that the child overdosed on heroin and nearly died."

Flynn and Hall were charged with felony child abuse and neglect. Walker said they were "long-term guests" in the townhouse. All four suspects allegedly admitted to being addicted to heroin and other drugs, DeCoster wrote.

Police obtained a search warrant for the townhouse three months after getting the case because all children had been removed from Fischl's custody by July 14, Walker said. "From our perspective, there was no rush," Walker said. Court records show the police seized a digital scale and a spoon.

Fischl has a long list of arrests, including prostitution charges in Fairfax and Prince William counties last year. In Fairfax, the charge was dismissed. In Prince William, Fischl was arrested in October 2008 at a Woodbridge hotel as part of an investigation to find children who are victims of prostitution and get them into protective custody, according to the Manassas Journal Messenger. But no children were found during the operation.

Court records show that Fischl was convicted in Prince William district court, appealed the case to circuit court and was found not guilty June 18, less than a month before her baby overdosed.
Fischl also has been convicted in Fairfax of forging prescriptions and failing to have a child properly secured with a seat belt.

Preston was convicted of robbery in Prince William in 1996 and arrested in 2002 on charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm and selling marijuana. The firearm charge was dismissed, and the drug charge was reduced to a misdemeanor.

Neighbors said they were stunned as police swarmed the townhouse Thursday afternoon and shocked by the overdose allegation. Fischl and Preston have lived in the townhouse since July, their landlord Mark Callan said.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

When Is It Time For an Intervention?

The holidays can be a difficult time for people suffering from addiction, what a better gift than to celebrate Thanksgiving or Christmas with a loved one who has been struggling to stay sober. How do you know when it is time for an intervention or better yet, how do you approach someone you love that you suspect is an alcoholic or drug addict?

Alcohol is the second most addicting substance in our Nation and just because it is legal does not mean it is safe. Another silent killer is prescription medication; both substances are highly addictive and fatal. Contemplating a solution and looking for a way to help someone you love out of addiction is a difficult decision that has a simple solution. Here are a set of questions to help make the decision that could potentially save the life of someone you love:

Have you ever lied to cover up someone else's alcohol or drug use?

Do you ever threaten to leave a loved one for drinking or using drugs?

Have you been hurt, scared or embarrassed by a user's behavior?

Do you feel angry, confused, scared or depressed most of the time due to a loved ones drug or alcohol problem?



The first step is to call our toll free number: 866-888-4911 and talk to one of our specialist to guide you through the intervention process. From there we will help evaluate the appropriate steps to take towards getting your loved one into treatment. Our qualified team will walk the family through steps towards a better life.

Meet with the family or person requesting the intervention to help develop a healthy set of boundaries and develop a bottom where the individual suffering from addiction will no longer be comfortable living in their disease.
Find a treatment center that can address all the addicts/alcoholics needs and give appropriate care to set the stage of developing a long lasting recovery.
Address the family to ensure everyone can stand by their healthy boundaries and provide a loving and supportive bottom line where the disease of addiction can no longer consume the functioning of every day life.

Drugs and alcohol are not the only addictions people suffer from: eating disorders, depression, OCD, hoarding, abusive relationships these issues can also have devastating and life altering results.

We also have an aftercare program to help the addict through their first year of recovery. Remember treatment does equal recovery; they are two separate issues and need to be addressed in a manner that is appropriate for each individual. After detoxing from drugs and alcohol the real work begins; after-treatment programs are not the same for everyone. Addicts are unique and intelligent people; we address everyone with love and support. Achieving a long, healthy sober life is our main goal at Intervention 911.


Call Intervention 911 any time, 24 hours a day toll free: 866-888-4911 or visit our website at:, even if your not sure an intervention is the right thing to do, get a free consultation to help find a solution. Get all of your questions answered, find relief and most of all....get into the solution with Intervention 911.

Heading to West Palm

Heading to West Palm Beach

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Working with a famil

Working with a family to help save loved one. Addict is missing in action. Say a prayer.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Halloween and Beyond

Halloween and Beyond: 10 Ways to Trick Your Teen Into a Healthy, Drug-Free Lifestyle

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

This just in from: J

This just in from: James Van Praagh Getting ready for Halloween. I have a lot of radio to do. I am on LOVELINE with Dr. Drew this evening. Come hear me on KROCK tonight at 10PM

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Keeping the Ball Rolling

By Lisa. M. WenDell, Intervention Coordinator, i911 / 866-888-4911

Sometimes when I am working with a family, I find myself in a situation where the addict is in desperate need of help but naturally doesn’t want it, the family is financially able to do an intervention and the treatment center has been selected, but the intervention is not moving forward. We are stalled. Why? Most likely fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of more regret over failed attempts to “do the right thing” for the addict in the past or fear of the intervention “not working”.

I love analogies and I liken this situation to bowling, specifically bowling with children, only because in this game there are bumpers. Addiction, alcoholism or any other destructive behavior is the line of bowling pins. The love and unity of the family is the bowling ball. Intervention911 are the bumpers on the side. The only thing that needs to happen is for the ball to keep rolling.

Addiction is a force to be reckoned with. Anyone who has the mistaken assumption that addiction can be overcome with willpower or strong determination has never found themselves in the throes of addiction or watched a loved one slowly die from this debilitating disease. There are few things that can conquer it. Love alone cannot tear it down, time will not heal it and allowing the addiction to “run its course” is not the solution. However, an intervention seems to roll all these into one: with the love of the family and friends of the addict plus the rapid presentation of consequences (in fact, speeding up the natural course of addiction), there is hope.

The bowling ball represents this hope. When a family unites together, decides they will no longer sit back and watch the disease progress and stands against the addiction, there is a powerful strength created. Sounds simple, right? Enter the bumpers.

Intervention911’s team of coordinators, professionals, interventionists and specialists are the bumpers that keep the ball on track. They are able to keep the family focused, prevent and eliminate obstacles and tackle anything standing in the way of the addict’s life being saved through the process of intervention. Without that team, a family can expect a gutter ball most of the time. I911 gently guides the family down the lane and stays committed until the “pins” of addiction are knocked down.

When I think of an intervention as a bowling analogy it all makes perfect sense. However, as I said, there are those situations where the process isn’t moving forward, for one reason or another. The solution is to keep the ball rolling. Once a family can trust the i911 team and let go of the ball, a change is bound to happen. Th ball makes it’s way toward the pins and the bumpers keep the ball on track. One way or another , there will be a result. The only fear that should be crippling a family in crisis is the FEAR OF DOING NOTHING. Dwight Eisenhower said “the best thing you can do is the right thing, the second best thing you can do is the wrong thing and the worst thing you can do is nothing.” I wholeheartedly agree.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Tomorrow starts a gr

Tomorrow starts a great few days.. I911 is having meeting in FL... Looking forward to seeing everyone..

Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD)

There are so many grassroots organizations that started with a heartfelt desire to make a positive change. MADD is an organization that is one of the best prevention programs that has changed our Nation, passing legislative laws to keep commuters and pedestrians safe.

Here is a brief history of MADD, keep in mind MADD was developed in 1980 after the very liberating 70's, the 70's were a time of major change. MADD was one of the loudest voices spearheaded by 2 women who demanded safety, support and safer laws during a time when drinking and driving were a social norm. Could you imagine a time when it was okay to drink and drive? Thanks to our predecessors the streets have an extremely low tolerance law, allowing us all to commute, walk, bike, skate, jog or however we choose to get around - safely (most of the time).

The disease of addiction does not care about safety or laws, children or the parents of children who have suffered great loss. As much as society advocates safety: no tolerance for drunk driving , babies in carseats and people commuting in general; people continue to drink and drive. Allowing someone to drive while intoxicated is the biggest mistake that does not have to happen. If someone you love is affected by alcohol, Intervention 911 is here day or night to support and give the solution.

The misconception is that alcohol is okay, because it is sold in stores. Alcohol is the 2nd most deadly drug in America and surprisingly enough tobacco is #1!!!! / Ph# 866-888-4911

"History of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)"

In 1980 a young girl by the name of Carrie Lightner was walking to a church carnival. 13 year old Carrie was struck with a car, driven by a drunk driver. The impact was so hard that it knocked her out of her shoes and threw her 125 feet into the air, cutting her life short. 125 feet is approximately the width of 2 telephone poles. The impact was so hard and sudden that little Carrie never even knew what hit her.

The drunk driver did not even bother to stop and see if Carrie was alright, instead he chose to try and hide the damages to on his vehicle. His wife found this behavior very strange and turned him into the police. The man was arrested, only to find out that he was a repeat offender of driving while intoxicated.

The heartache pain of losing a child sent Carrie's mother, Candice Lightner on a mission to seek justice and help other people who suffer at the careless hands of drunk drivers. Along side of Candice was her friend and colleague Sue LeBrun-Green. Together they would spearhead an organization that would change our Nation and the lives of countless people.

In 1980 drunk driving was not on society's radar, it was a social norm. Thousands of people were dyeing each year. Marilyn Sabin Alcohol Coordinator for the “California Office of Traffic Safety” had kept trying to push a DUI Bill that continued to fail. Yet, $35 million was being spent on alcohol safety programs and nothing was working.

The first office that "Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)" set up was in Carrie Lightner's still decorated bedroom. This was truly a grassroots program fueled by the pain, love and anguish of a broken hearted mother. Candice Lightner was unaware of the explosive change she was soon to make in the shattered lives of families, victimized by drunk drivers.

The wheels of the new MADD organization gradually began to turn. The beginning was slow; they gathered statistical information, reached out to other victims and disseminated written newsletters. Their main objective was to figure how to stop getting the run-around from the judicial system?

Candice and Sue instantly made an impact throughout communities. Victims of drunk drivers began pouring in with questions and were in need of support, faster than the small organization could answer. Within 4 months MADD became a corporation.

The changes were heartfelt and obvious, even politicians began to return their calls. MADD grew from coast to coast and the demand to create a drunk driving task force became eminent. Cindy Lamb and her 5 month old baby were the victims of a drunk driving accident, her baby became the youngest person to become a paraplegic. Cindy started the Maryland chapter.

People questioned the morale of MADD, asking why are they all so angry? In response: a paralyzed baby, a deceased or badly burned child is right enough for any mother, father or family member to be angry!

At this point Cindy Lamb and Candice Lightner went National to Capitol Hill, demanding legislation be passed on tougher drunk driving laws. On October 1, 1980 the shift that would change drunk driving forever began to happen. Victims and volunteers would come together and joined forces, even housewives got involved -- they all united in the fight to change legislation.

A woman and her husband were involved in a head-on collision with a drunk driver, the husband was severely injured and this is how the Milwaukee chapter of MADD got started. This was the chain reaction of MADD, people in abundance got involved in order to improve laws and support each other through the pain of losing loved one’s or dealing with the grief of life altering experiences caused from drunk driving.

MADD was sprouting up everywhere and growing like wildfire, everyone wanted a solution to drunk driving and MADD was at the forefront of this demand. MADD's passion to reach out and help people was obvious and loud throughout communities. Through MADD people got to reach out to one another, give support in the process of mourning, mount the pain of loss and navigate their way through the judicial system. A majority of MADD's volunteers are people who have suffered loss due to drunk driving - all too well, understanding each other’s pain.

This little grassroots organization that started in May of 1980, in just one month had grown into 11 chapters with 6 more still forming. By 1982 MADD had 100 chapters, this program was such a success that President Reagan invited MADD to participate in the commission on drunk driving. During that same year a bill was also passed awarding funds to highways with anti-drunk driving efforts. Those that did not participate did not receive funds.

The year 1982 was a good year for MADD, anti-drunk driving laws were passed in 24 states, by 1983 it grew to 35 states. Imagine, it took only one mothers pain and anguished loss to cause such a massive and profound movement.

Funds are necessary for MADD to survive, in the beginning of its tenure large insurance companies donated money and amazingly enough the founders of these companies were in one form or another, victims of alcohol related incidents. Since then, MADD has formed other ways of raising money, please refer to to get further information.

MADD has taken on and accomplished legislative laws, impacted communities and had an iconic impression throughout the nation from generations past and generations to come. In 1984 the uniform drinking age was passed to 21 years of age. This had a diverse explosion and MADD was the spearhead of this change.

By the end of 1984 MADD had 330 chapters in 47 states. MADD was a force of change and emotional support held together by people whose lives had been negatively affected by drunk drivers. In 1985 Candice left MADD and the organization was taken over by a board of corporate members. MADD had become financially solvent. Financial issues were galore, due to the capacity MADD had grown into. The executive board worked hard and managed to stabilize and organize MADD in order to continue its life saving crusade.

The main objective of MADD is to help victims be healthy again - for MADD this is not a financial intake.

On May 14, 1988 the worst drunk driving accident in history happened. A drunk driver drove head on into a bus full of young people returning home from a church outing. 24 young people and 3 adults died that day. The few survivors were mortified with memories of watching their friend’s burn to death. MADD was the only organization on the scene, giving support to the families of the victims. One more time, MADD was there to pick up the pieces of the careless decision an intoxicated person made by choosing to drive.

By 1990 MADD's message was loud and began to have a significant effect. Alcohol related traffic accidents had dropped by 44,400 and at the same time the BAL law changed from .10 to .08. Mad stood stern and proved that .10 was too high of an alcohol level to get behind the wheel of an automobile -- one more time MADD was successful in passing another safety law.

These changes have not been easy, many hours and devotion is put into passing laws by the volunteers that make MADD what it is. MADD -- one leaf at a time has turned the once hushed topic of drinking and driving into a loud voice that will never again be silenced -- giving justice, support and change where it was much needed.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Both Sides of the Fence

Being a member of a team of interventionists and professionals in the field of drug and alcohol abuse; specifically providing intervention and recovery services, there is rarely anything as heartbreaking as watching an intervention fall apart.

We have seen interventions that went as smoothly as anyone could have dreamed, and we’ve seen interventions that were reminiscent of an episode of “Cops.” In the intervention field of work, we have seen both types succeed with great results.

Unfortunately, there are those cases where the alcoholic or addict is reaching out for help, begging to be “saved” and more than willing to go to treatment, when something happens to throw a wrench in the process. Sometimes the family is that wrench.

Day after day, my team and I at Intervention 911 does what we do best: we work with families in crisis that need the professional guidance to break the unhealthy cycle of addiction and move the situation into a state of positive change. We come armed with knowledge, experience and credentials galore. More importantly, we come with compassion, a listening ear and a heart for recovery.

From my own experience, being part of an intervention as a family member is an extremely scary and difficult thing. We know we need a professional’s guidance, we know we should trust their direction and yet, when the rubber meets the road, we are the only ones that can make that life-saving decision to hold firm to the healthy boundaries we know are right. This is the most critical time in an intervention. I can’t tell you it is comfortable or pleasant because it isn’t.

What I can tell you is that the level of discomfort is nothing compared to the remorse and guilt felt after an unsuccessful intervention, knowing that I contributed to the sickness of a loved one by not taking a stand for their wellness.

This is my story entirely. I was on board to get my loved one help, I headed up the organization of the intervention and kept everything on my family’s end moving in the right direction. I was excited to know that I had someone I could trust coming in to guide my family through this effective, yet fear-ridden process. I wrote a letter filled with love and healthy boundaries to present at the intervention and hoped that the rest of the family believed in this process as much as I did.

However, when the time came to present my healthy boundaries to my loved one and execute on those consequences, I just couldn’t do it. I pulled back, took the control away from the Interventionist and even though “my way” hadn’t worked at all thus far, decided that “my way” would work better than the tried and true process we were supposed to be engaging in.

Let me tell you how my story ended: my loved one didn’t get help that day, my family was more fractured than ever before, and had I found a rock large enough to accommodate myself and my shame, I would’ve been more than happy to crawl under it and never come out. To this day, if I could do it again, I would do it differently. I would step back, listen to the guidance I was being given no matter how difficult it would be, and trust the process.

As a family member who has been through the intervention process, I now see that even if I had to stand by my boundaries and endure a measure of pain in doing so, it couldn’t have been any more painful that the life I was living watching my loved one die.

The problem is that because addiction is progressive and is a family disease, over time the family becomes accustomed to the pain, we lower our expectations for happiness and gear up for survival mode. We try to arrange every piece of the puzzle to just keep the peace in the family. In doing so, we not only lose ourselves but we continue to enable the addict to live in the sickness. Not only that, we stay in the sickness with them.

When an intervention takes place, one way or another, there will be a life altering change. If the family engages properly, takes direction from the professionals, that change can be positive. It may not look like the picture we had in our head, it may not “feel good” immediately, but change will happen. Either our loved one will chose to get well or we have the privilege of not having to stay sick any longer. In most cases, we get both.

As a member of the Intervention 911 team, I know that intervention’s work, but as with anything, an intervention has got to be a united endeavor. The family needs us, but we need the family too. We need the family to stick to their commitment to bring about change, no matter how hard the initial discomfort feels. We need the family to trust our experience and motives.

Most of all, we need the family to let us guide them through this process with love and compassion. If the family can do that, the result will be good. Nothing changes until something changes. Together, the Intervention911 team and the family reaching out for support can bring about miracles.

We have seen lives change, children grow up with sober parents, marriages saved and relationships healed. Trust. Strength. Unity. These are necessary ingredients to a successful intervention. If you trust us, we can offer you the strength you need by working with you and for you to stop the sickness and support the wellness of not just the addict, but the family as a whole. / PH# 866-888-4911

Why does the redeye

Why does the redeye always seem good when your planning it but the day you land you feel like dying???

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Thank you everyone f

Thank you everyone for your kind words and support... BUT I have to ask you to please keep watching the show and PLEASE tell everyone you know about it. This show saves lives and is changing millions of people's views regarding addiction. So I would say tell everyone you know to tune in Monday’s at 8 and 9 pm to A&E and if they are not home to tivo it… We need to help as many people as possible and this show does educate the public on the ugly face of addiction.. Thank you again!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Going to dentist...

Going to dentist... Anyone want to take my place???? Love it when it is over but urrrrr not happy on the way there..

Thursday, October 1, 2009

September - Recovery Month!

What a busy and exciting month of September it has been! I went to the Recovery Rally in New York where thousands were in attendance to celebrate and share a strong message of recovery.
We marched from NY City to Brooklyn via the Brooklyn Bridge. It was a very uplifting and enriching experience.

President Obama proclaimed the month of September as “Recovery Month”. What a wonderful and positive way to spread a strong message. For those of us who have the blessing of recovery and those who are struggling in their addiction – Recovery Month is a powerful way to spread the message to people that overcoming their addictions can be a cause for celebration.

Recovery month brings addicts and alcoholics from all walks of life together, celebrating unity and strength in numbers. The most amazing part of making the decision to surrender and get clean is that we don’t have to do it alone and we join a community of people that support, struggle and feel the same way.

Read this article I found in the Clarksdale Press Register. If you think you might have problem with substances or alcohol, or maybe you are questioning the addiction of someone you love, feel free to contact us at: 866-888-4911 /

Article from: Written by: Karen Casey

September is recovery month for addicts

By KAREN CASEYSpecial to The Press Register
Thursday, September 24, 2009 8:52 AM CDT

Addiction wears many faces. They might be homeless alcoholics or millionaire doctors hooked on opiates; housewives eating themselves into oblivion or teenagers starving, exercising and cutting; or the rich and poor who have gambled their lives away.

"As technology has spread throughout the world, many have found themselves addicted," says Barbara Joy, author of Easy Does It, Mom. All forms of addiction - including texting, cell phones, email, eBay, online pornography, online gambling, and blogging - are equally serious. It can be more difficult for those with seemingly "healthy" addictions such as working, cleaning, and exercising to separate the benefits from the problems caused by their obsessive behavior.
However, any time the behavior is causing life problems, and the person can't stop doing it, that person has crossed into addiction.

Addiction can happen anywhere, anytime, to anyone regardless of age, gender, ethnic group, or financial status. "Given the right set of circumstances, I believe any person can become addicted to one thing or another," offers Barb Rogers, author of 12 Steps That Can Save Your Life. Unfortunately, most people don't seek help for their addictions until the consequences have stripped them of families, jobs, self-respect, and all hope.

Perhaps 20 percent of the population are addicts, and it's said that each addict affects at least 6 other people, many of whom are codependents, or enablers. In a nutshell, co-dependency means a loss of self. If you care for rather than about an addict, you might well be a codependent, and your main job is to accept is that you simply cannot control the behavior of any one else, even if that person is a child or spouse. "The best-case scenario for a codependent is that he or she will learn enough self-love to stop believing it is necessary or possible to save another person from addiction or trouble of any kind," asserts Rachael Brownell, author of Mommy Doesn't Drink Here Anymore. Just as addicts need help in recovery, those who care for them may also be in need of a program and a support system such as al-anon.

Codependents may be clear about the fact that a loved one is an addict, but
how can we tell if we, ourselves, are addicts? If we question our own behavior, and we feel anxiety or panic when we try to give it up, then we probably do have an addiction problem.

September is a key month for addicts and their loved ones, because it has been designated Recovery Month which is an annual observance that highlights and celebrates the societal benefits of substance abuse treatment. It promotes the message that recovery from substance abuse, in all its forms, is possible, and it provides a platform to celebrate those in recovery as well as those who serve them. Joy says, "It also serves to inform and educate the public on substance abuse as a national health crisis. As more people become educated, the stigma associated with addiction and treatment is reduced. When we have an accurate understanding of the disease, we are better able to support treatment programs, those who serve in the field, and those in need of treatment."

Media coverage given to celebrity addicts, such as Michael Jackson, Heath Ledger, and Anna Nicole Smith, may exacerbate the problem. When addicts don't want to give up their addictions, they will grab onto any excuse or justification to continue. It's easy for addicts to feel that, if the best personal doctors and private clinics in the world can't help celebrity addicts, then there's no hope. The truth is that recovery from addiction doesn't require a celebrity's wealth or status. "It's an inside job, and nothing - not celebrity or money - can do it for us," says Rogers.

Recovery means 'to recover one's life,' and there's no single method that works for everyone. "Addicts in recovery believe that whatever works for them is the best program. For many people, recovery involves a 12-step program, but there are alternatives: behavior modification programs, one-on-one treatment programs, holistic addiction treatment centers, and the like," Joy points out.

"You can get clean and sober without a 12-steps program, but you will be doing it alone. Why would you want to, when you could have a community to help you?" wonders Bucky Sinister, author of Get Up: A 12-Step Guide to Recovery for Misfits, Freaks & Weirdo’s.

One thing that most addicts are not seeking is a magic cure for theiraddictions. "If there were a pill, or new therapy innovation that thedoctors promised me would cure my addictions so that I'd never have to attend meetings, or work steps again, I'd have to say, 'no, thank you.' This12-step journey is something I wouldn't have missed for the world. Workingthe steps has taken me to places within, and outside, myself where I neverimagined I would go. It's brought me together with others whom I wouldotherwise never have met. It's helped me resolve my past issues, and shownme a well-worn path that led me to a life beyond my wildest dreams. It wasthe most difficult thing I've ever done," concludes Rogers, "and I would doit all over again.

"Karen Casey is the author of "Change Your Mind and Your Life Will Follow."

Visit her online at

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

This is happening ev

This is happening everyday.. Please get help 866-888-4911 Signs to look for:

Monday, September 28, 2009

See you on Monday at

See you on Monday at 9/8c for the “One Man Rehab” #intervention special!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

22 hours on planes..

22 hours on planes... Great to be home but soooo happy to help another family..... Love this work..

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Ex-Marine gets life for drug deal killing

Intervening in an addict’s life before a drug deal goes horribly wrong is one of the goal’s of Intervention 911. Sitting back and watching someone self-destruct from addiction is a one way trip to jails, institutions or worse yet, death.

Look at this article I found regarding an EX-Marine who took his addiction too far. He killed another man over a laptop computer.

Thinking “this could never happen,” is the biggest mistake family members make, leaving life altering consequences to shatter lives – some decisions cannot be reversed. Whether this man suffered from PTSD, which is very common amongst people who served in the military or if drugs played a major role in his decision making, perhaps this incident could have been prevented.

This story is so sad, if you know someone who needs help – please call us. All information is kept confidential; we specialize in all addictions and help all people: military, dual diagnosis, teenager, elderly, stay at home parents, single people, etc. Remember the disease of addiction does not discriminate. / 866-888-4911

Story by: The Associated Press

Ex-Marine gets life for Calif. drug deal killing

LONG BEACH, Calif. — A former Marine who served in Iraq has been sentenced to life in prison without parole for killing a California man to collect money owed for a drug debt.

The Los Angeles County district attorney's office says former Cpl. Ramon Hernandez was sentenced Monday for shooting David Pettigrew.

Prosecutors say two other Camp Pendleton Marines gave Pettigrew a laptop computer in exchange for an ounce of cocaine.

When the victim failed to give them the drugs, Anthony Vigeant (vih-ZHANT') and Trevor Landers recruited Hernandez to help collect the laptop.

The 25-year-old pleaded guilty to murder and two robbery counts and testified against them at trial. Hernandez served two tours in Iraq and suffered severe brain injuries in a 2004 bombing.

Posted By: Ken Seeley – Founder – Intervention 911

Monday, September 21, 2009

Tools For Prevention

Addiction to drugs, alcohol, food and even bad relationships are a fact of life. Reaching out early to children and teenagers is a key to prevention to all types of problems and addictions they will encounter throughout their lives.

What is an effective way to reach out? There is a wonderful website full of information and designed to help kids and teenagers who may be struggling with addiction or know someone who is an addict. has so many necessary tools to help provide the knowledge they need to cope with pressure and be able to relate to other young people their age.

Sometimes it is so hard to watch our children, nieces, nephews or young people we love struggle with issues that seem important at their age level. As adults, getting through to them can be difficult; utilizing tools and learning to communicate about drugs and dangerous behaviors is important towards building a foundation of love, trust and understanding at home – or in developing a relationship with a child or teen we have in our life.

Look at this website:, it is full of so many wonderful ways to inform our young people on how to deal with pressure on many levels. The website has:

How to deal with peer pressure
Self acceptance
Teasing and bullying
Facts about drugs
Options to speak or hear others – audio and visual
Links to get help

There is much more! What a wonderful tool, prevention is the solution! Pass this website on, it is clever, fun and informative – most of all it could change the outcome of at least one young persons life and that is a start towards winning the war on drugs. You can never have to much information or knowledge to make a positive change!

If you know a family in crisis or a young person who needs help, please call for a free consultation with one of our specialist or visit our website:

866-888-4911 /

Posted by:
Ken Seeley – Founder – Intervention 911

It is no fun being s

It is no fun being sick...

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Russia urges tougher U.S.-led action on Afghan drugs

Look at this story regarding heroin use in Russia. Drug addiction has no boundaries, does not need a passport and is worldwide. It is alarming that 90% of heroin sold worldwide comes from Afghanistan.

The UN is coming together to help support Russia in its efforts to stop the export of Heroin and implement a solution in fighting Heroin addiction in public schools. Heroin has been an epidemic for many years and does not seem to be getting any better. Read this article I found on the Reuters website:

Russia urges tougher U.S.-led action on Afghan drugs Tue Sep 8, 2009

Website: quotes from Russia's drug enforcement agency)
Story By: Denis Dyomkin

Up to 2.5 million Russians are drug addicts

Drug use contributes to demographic problem

Russia urges U.S.-led forces to stem Afghan drugs

Students may face tests

MOSCOW, Sept 8 (Reuters) - High drug use among Russia's youth is a threat to national security, President Dmitry Medvedev said on Tuesday.

With Russia the world's top consumer of Afghan heroin, the head of its drug enforcement agency also called on U.S.-led forces in Afghanistan to do more to stem the flow of drugs.

"The young age of drug users is a threat to the country's national security, a serious challenge to the health of the nation and to the already extremely complicated demographic situation," Medvedev said.

Russia already faces a shrinking population because of poor diet, smoking and heavy drinking. Russian men have an average life expectancy of 59 years, far lower than in western Europe.

A declining population, coupled with serious health problems, would undermine Russia's economy by reducing the size of its workforce." Experts believe the real number of (drug) users ranges between 2 million and 2.5 million," Medvedev told a meeting of top officials who make up Russia's Security Council." This is almost two percent of Russian citizens, and the most dangerous thing is that two thirds of this number are youths aged less than 30," he said.

Official data show that some 30,000 drug users, aged 28 on average, die in Russia each year. This compares to a total of around 15,000 dead in the far more populous Soviet Union lost during the whole of its Afghan war in 1979-89.


Alarmed by the drug trade and concerned about a spread of hardline Islamist militancy into the former Soviet Central Asian republics, Russia has taken some steps towards cooperating with the United States in the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan.

It has allowed the United States to move supplies through Russian territory and is looking at ways of increasing international cooperation to stem the heroin trade."One just cannot fight this monster alone," Viktor Ivanov, head of Russia's drug enforcement agency, told reporters." This is why we believe that as long as we support this (U.S.-led) operation conducted there, we have the right to expect that these forces will fight to destroy these drugs."

U.N. data show that Afghanistan's opium harvest totalled 6,900 tonnes, down from 7,700 tonnes in 2008. But this year's crop still accounts for some 90 per cent of the world's supply. The United Nations believes traders are hoarding stockpiles, perhaps as much as 10,000 tonnes, or double the annual illicit demand for the drug.

Medvedev said Russia was still lacking a nationwide anti-drug strategy and pressed for tougher punishment against those involved in drug-related crimes. Testing students in all Russian educational institutions for drug addiction could be introduced, Medvedev said.

Ivanov said Russia's anti-drug strategy would ready in the first half of next year."Greater punishment will also be applied for corruption crimes linked to the illegal drug trade... as well as for crimes linked to laundering cash from drug sales," Medvedev said. (Writing by Dmitry Solovyov;
Editing by Myra MacDonald)

Posted By: Ken Seeley – Founder – Intervention 911


866-888-4911 / WWW.INTERVENTION911.COM

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Recovery Project

The Recovery Project Rally is THIS Saturday in NYC! Don’t miss the free @Smokey_Robinson concert!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Happy Labor Day!! Of

Happy Labor Day!! Off on a boat in Tampa Bay today... Hope your all with loved ones..

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Follow me on Twitter

Follow me on Twitter all day Sept.12 from NYC at the Recovery Rally. Please tell your friends that want to celebrate recovery or support recovery from addiction to come out to the event this month, Recovery Month. Forward this to everyone.. Expecting over 10k people, don’t miss out

No one should die be

No one should die because they cannot afford health care, and no one should go broke because they get sick. We are only as strong as the weakest among us. If you agree, please post this as your status for the rest of the day.

Follow me on Twitter

Follow me on Twitter all day Sept.12 from NYC at the Recovery Rally. Please tell your friends that want to celebrate recovery or support recovery from addiction to come out to the event this month, Recovery Month. Forward this to everyone.. Expecting over 10k people, don’t miss out

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Just got back to LA

Just got back to LA last night and heading back to FL tonight... Redeye yuck...

Back to School!


It is back to school time for many kids and adults of all ages. It was a nice summer break but now it’s time to hit the books! For students, school can be very stressful. Between studies, social interaction and the demands of others, students are susceptible to turning to drugs and alcohol to deal with some of these pressures.

It is often thought that peer pressure can play a major role in encouraging the use of alcohol and drugs for high school and college age students. Coupled with the other pressures students face, they can often times become addicted – thus sabotaging their chance of success in school.

Please read the article below to see what steps you can take to help a loved one with an addiction. It is interesting to see how the students are responding to pressure from peers and family to get help at a greater level than those students who are not. We see this with interventions all the time. When families get together under the direction of a professional, credentialed interventionist, the act itself helps move the addict to their rock bottom so they decide to get help for themselves

Article from: CARON

A new study suggests pressure from friends and parents plays a stronger role than previously believed in motivating college students to seek help for a substance use disorder. Overall, very few college students with substance use disorders seek help. But that percentage rises significantly among those who get pressure from their friends, peers or parents about their drinking or drug use

The study was conducted by investigators from the Center for Substance Abuse Research (CESAR) at the University of Maryland, College Park, and published on-line in July by the Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment. Amelia Arria, Ph.D., the study’s lead investigator, is also a senior scientist at the Treatment Research Institute (TRI), a non-profit research development group dedicated to science-driven information of policy and practice in substance abuse. Behavioral Health Central recently interviewed Dr. Arria about the study and how the results might be used to help increase the number of young adults who receive help for a substance use disorder during their critical and formative college years. To listen to or read this report, click here.Today and every Monday, look to BHC for your weekly update of content from Mental Health Weekly Digest – a comprehensive summary of research and behavioral healthcare news from around the world. You’ll find it posted to Clinical News and corresponding Conditions and Disorders.

POSTED BY: Ken Seeley – Founder – Intervention
Phone # 866-888-4911

Friday, August 28, 2009

Addiction is so powe

Addiction is so powerful Please say a prayer for his family..

This is why we need

This is why we need to monitor addicts for the first few years… We monitor for other illnesses, why not addiction?? It is time we work together and spread that message.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Back in LA for a wee

Back in LA for a week.. for those who are counting I lost 13lbs in 11 days.. I am putting together that website so we can do this together for those who wanted to...

Monday, August 24, 2009

“Labor Day DUI Crackdown Begins Today”

The summer is in full affect for many, drunk driving happens all to often. Buzzed driving is drunk driving. City officials are cracking down and there is a no tolerance level of drinking and getting behind the wheel. All too often I am involved with families where drinking has destroyed someone they love and a DUI or a fatal accident has ripped their life apart.

Read this article about DUI’s and if you or someone you love is going to drink and drive, think again, DUI’s are very hard and expensive to resolve and can potentially kill you or an innocent person or a child. Having an intervention planned by family members is much easier than one enforced by the law. Developing a bottom for an alcoholic is much more effective than identifying their body at the morgue. At Intervention 911 we can help: 1-800-905-7655.

“Labor Day DUI Crackdown Begins Today”

Written By: Mike Morris
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Labor Day weekend is still two weeks away, but a statewide “Operation Zero Tolerance” holiday crackdown on drunk drivers begins today.
The crackdown, which runs through Labor Day, is being run in conjunction with the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety’s “100 Days of Summer HEAT” campaign. HEAT stands for Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic.

“The sad fact is one out of three of our fatal highway crashes in Georgia each year is caused by impaired drivers,” said Bob Dallas, director of the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety. “And every one of those tragic alcohol-related deaths is completely preventable.”

During the next two weeks, officers will be issuing no warnings to impaired drivers, officials said. “We even warn motorists what days to watch out for blue lights,” Dallas said. “We hope every driver will pay attention to our enforcement warning.”

Posted by Ken Seeley – Founder – Intervention 911

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Heading to New Orlea

Heading to New Orleans.. Checking out a treatment center with John Southworth, Pine Grove in Mississippi

Friday, August 21, 2009


SAVE THE DATE.... NYC Recovery Project With Jane Velez Mitchell MC and Smokey Robinson entertainment. Thank you A&E...

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Younger people turn to heroin; possible link to prescription drug abuse

Heroin is a seriously addictive opiate that is affecting thousands of people. Not only is it destroying the lives of adults, but our young people are becoming and have been addicted as well. Please view my next post regarding signs that a teenager could be abusing opiates/heroin or drugs.
Teenagers are becoming addicted to heroin not realizing the potency of the drug they are putting into their system; the next hit could be their last hit. Another red flag are the drugs we keep in our medicine cabinets, teenagers are researching prescription drugs on the internet and steeling their parents medication. Read this blog about the teenage heroin epidemic. This is a serious problem and being aware could save a life.

Younger people turn to heroin; possible link to prescription drug abuse

Author: Calli Fisher

Dan Piirainen says he watched some of his lifelong friends' lives turn upside down as they experimented with heroin. But this isn't the typical drug addict story.

A group of friends began using the dangerous drug at a young age, as early as 17 years old. Heroin use overall in Northern Nevada is climbing at an alarming rate, but the Regional Street Enforcement Team says the situation is even more concerning because younger people are buying the drug.

"We used to see a heroin addict be a 30 or 40 year old person who has been using for a couple of years, and they inject it or IV-use heroin. But today, a lot more young people are using it," Sgt. Mac Venzon, with the Street Enforcement Team, said.

Venzon says they are seeing people ages 17 to 20 "stuck in the heroin loop that they just can't get out of." Piirainen says he's not surprised and has witnessed the snowball effect of heroin.

"One friend would do it. They would pass it on. It would just get bigger and bigger. Now the monster is out of control," he said. "They always chose the drug over friendship and family. They didn't care."

The Street Enforcement Team has been recovering more and more heroin from the streets over the past couple of years. In 2006, they seized 6.4 grams. It climbed to 59.1 grams and 195 grams in 2007 and 2008, respectively.

The amount of heroin recovered has skyrocketed so far in 2009. The Street Enforcement Team seized 513.9 grams of heroin in the first half of this year alone, which is on pace for 2009 to have more than a 400 percent increase from 2008.

Data also shows the number of arrests for heroin charges in Washoe County is rising. Arrests doubled from 19 in 2007 to 46 in 2008. 56 heroin arrests are in books through the first half of 2009.

So why are younger people turning to heroin? The Street Enforcement Team believes there is a link between prescription drug abuse and heroin. Venzon says heroin and many painkillers are opiate-based drugs. Once a user becomes addicted to the prescription drug, the "turn to heroin is not that far away."

Venzon says the street price of heroin can actually be cheaper than buying pills. A small balloon of heroin goes for about $10, according to Venzon.
Piirainen says the problem is spiraling out of control. "Don't think you can try it once and not do it again. It's not even worth it," Piirainen said.
Posted By: Ken Seeley – Founder – Intervention 911

Teenage Drug Abuse - Warning Signs

August, 17 2009

Here are some very important warning signs to watch for if your teenager or someone you know might be abusing drugs. For more information on warning signs and what to do if a teenager/tween is abusing substances refer to the website below or call us at our toll free number.

At Intervention 911 each case is unique and if your even a little suspicious that your teen or someone you love is abusing drugs or alcohol call us at 1-800-905-7655 for a free consultation with one of our professional Interventionist. Getting involved and stopping the cycle of addiction could save the life of a teenager!

Information from the US Drug Enforcement Agency
By: Barbara Poncelet

How Can You Recognize the Signs of Substance Abuse?

Parents provides general signs of substance abuse and also gives specific signs of alcohol abuse, and several different drugs, narcotics, and inhalants. The general warning signs are:

• Changes in friends
• Negative changes in schoolwork, missing school, or declining grades
• Increased secrecy about possessions or activities
• Use of incense, room deodorant, or perfume to hide smoke or chemical odors
• Subtle changes in conversations with friends, e.g. more secretive, using “coded” language
• Change in clothing choices: new fascination with clothes that highlight drug use
• Increase in borrowing money
• Evidence of drug paraphernalia such as pipes, rolling papers, etc.
• Evidence of use of inhalant products (such as hairspray, nail polish, correction fluid, common household products); Rags and paper bags are sometimes used as accessories
• Bottles of eye drops, which may be used to mask bloodshot eyes or dilated pupils
• New use of mouthwash or breath mints to cover up the smell of alcohol
• Missing prescription drugs—especially narcotics and mood stabilizers

Remember, these are very general signs, specific drugs, narcotics, and other substances may have different signs, it is important to read the specific signs.

What Steps Should a Parent Take?

Should I monitor my child?

Monitoring is an effective way you can help your teen or tween stay drug-free, and an important thing to do — even if you don't suspect your teen is using drugs. The idea of "monitoring" your tween or teen may sound sinister, but it's actually a very simple idea that leads to great things: You know where your child is at all times (especially after school), you know his friends, and you know his plans and activities. ….Because monitoring conflicts with your child's desire to be independent, he is likely to resist your attempts to find out the details of his daily whereabouts. Don't let this deter you from your goal. He may accept the idea more easily if you present it as a means of ensuring safety or interest in who he is and what he likes to do, rather than as a means of control. You need to be prepared for your child's resistance — because the rewards of monitoring are proven. …The most important time of day to monitor is after school from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Kids are at the greatest risk for abusing drugs during these hours….
If I know my child is using drugs, should I alert the principal or the guidance counselor -- or try to keep the information from the people at school?

Before discussing the situation with anyone at the school, it can help to seek assistance from a professional who has experience with adolescent substance use, such as a mental health professional, family therapist, pediatrician or family physician, substance use counselor, or employee assistance professional. Ask for an in-person evaluation with your child, or a meeting to discuss your concerns and get advice about how to proceed. Perhaps counseling, a support group, or a treatment program is warranted. If your child refuses help and continues to use substances, contacting the school is an option, but should be used with great caution. School officials want to keep alcohol and other drugs off school premises, and ensure that students are not coming to school high or using during school. They are required to punish students who violate these rules by suspending or expelling them. Notifying the school about your teen’s behavior will likely put them on a ‘to be watched’ list. Other times the school is the immediate source of feedback on problems – drugs or alcohol found in lockers or used during the school day, etc. and you’ll need to speak with someone at the school right away. The school may have resources available to help, such as a staff substance abuse counselor who can work with your child. For some teens, this strategy can be very positive -- school authorities’ monitoring can give you concrete help in keeping a child with a problem on track in changing his behavior. Some children, however, need to suffer serious consequences before they will seek or accept help.
Should I try to make my teen give up friends?

It is very difficult to get teens to give up their friends. However, you can express your concerns. Tell your child what it is about the friend that worries you. Support developing a variety of friends and not relying too much on any one. Remember that teen drug use is basically a social behavior. If you know certain friends of theirs are using substances, minimize your child’s social contact with those friends by not giving them car rides, allowing visits or sleepovers with them or attendance at parties where they will be involved. This will send a strong message to your own child about how seriously you take health risks of substances.
On the other hand, go out of your way to encourage and facilitate your child’s contact with any friends who you believe are not using substances. These ties can be all incredibly important support for a child trying to change his behavior.
What limits should I set?

Work at setting limits only on behaviors you can control. For example, a rule that a teen cannot smoke pot is nearly impossible to enforce, but a rule that says a teen who gets caught smoking pot will be grounded or cannot use the family car for a month is one that you can enforce.
What should the penalties be for violation of those limits?

Choose consequences that can be applied without expressing a lot of critical or angry feelings. Parents frequently be¬tray their sense of helplessness by resorting to angry outbursts that are much more punitive than a consequence administered without anger or rage. A relatively short-term punishment carried out to the letter is much more effective than a long-term punishment that parents eventually ignore because they feel guilty. Make sure the penalties can be enforced by you on a practical basis – if they involve supervision or monitoring, change them for times you can be there.
If your child continues to violate limits, impose more severe consequences.


Another helpful resource is Alateen:

Blog posted by: Ken Seeley - Founder – Intervention 911

Sunday, August 16, 2009

I have gained way to

I have gained way to much weight. I am back at the gym tomorrow and eating better, going to loss a pound a day for the next month.. Anyone up for a challenge?

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Check in OUT not our

Check in OUT not our... Sorry

Every Friday night T

Every Friday night The Crossing 7pm 2115 Newport Blvd. Costa Mesa, CA 92627 949.645.5050, If you never been please check it our so much fun... It was a blast last night very high energy.. Put in your calendar as a must see….

Friday, August 14, 2009

Looking forward to s

Looking forward to speaking at The Crossing tonight 7pm. The Crossing, hope to see you there.. 2115 Newport Blvd. Costa Mesa, CA 92627 949.645.5050 fax 949.645.4767 We are located on Newport Blvd. near the corner of Newport and Victoria.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Gooing to Lake Arrow

Gooing to Lake Arrowhead to check out a sober living home tomorrow.. Looking foward to seeing it should be nice this time of year up there..

Dual Diagnosis

Dual Diagnosis:

So many times people are diagnosed with a variety of mental illnesses. The fear of being honest with a medical professional is overwhelming and people are not reporting to their Doctors that they are abusing street drugs, alcohol or prescription medication. This is a severe problem and knowing the truth about dual diagnosis is so important in order to give hope to those who suffer and the families that love them.

2/3 of the patients checking-in to receive substance abuse treatment display signs of dual diagnosis (Falls-Stewart & Lucente). Dual Diagnosis is when a person suffers from a form of mental illness and they also abuse chemicals (alcohol included). The biggest misconception is assessing the person to have a certain mental illness that is being induced by the chemical being abused; unknowingly due to dishonesty.

If a person truly has a mental illness, the sickness will display itself early in age – usually around 18-22 years old, sometimes even younger. Substances can also make mental illnesses surface later in age. Substances cause behaviors that are very similar to several different mental illnesses.

The only way to really tell if someone is truly mentally ill is to allow the person to detox from the substances that they are abusing and then make an assessment that is beneficiary to their needs. In most cases their mental issue behaviors are caused by the substances and will completely go away once the substance has completely left their system.

Dual diagnosis is a tricky and sensitive issue. Most addicts want to diagnose themselves, prolonging their disease, not knowing that the substances they are using; cause 99% of their problems. It can take 3 days to 8 weeks to fully detox and give a proper diagnosis to ones health issues.

It is so sad to watch people suffer from dual diagnosis while they are their disease; the good news is that there is a solution! In the Washington Post there is a very informative, yet sad article about a guy name “Danny” who severely suffered from dual diagnosis. Read this article to help bring awareness in order to help prevent this sad story from happening again:

Monday, August 10, 2009 see what other say about tonights show...

Don't forget to let

Don't forget to let your friends know about tonight 9pm A&E all new Intervention.. Thanks for passing it on.. It helps people be aware how to save a loved one from addiction...

Friday, August 7, 2009

Have a great weekend

Have a great weekend but remember Monday 9pm a all new Intervention on A&E Tell your friends..

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Drunk Driving Tragedy

A mother drank vodka and smoked marijuana while taking a vanload of children home from a weekend camping trip that ended in disaster when she went the wrong way on a highway and crashed into an SUV, killing eight people, police said Tuesday.

Diane Schuler, who died along with her 2-year-old daughter and three nieces in her red minivan, had more than 10 drinks of alcohol in her system and a high level of the main ingredient in marijuana, authorities said. A broken 1.75-liter bottle of Absolut vodka was found in her wrecked minivan, police said.

The revelations from the 36-year-old Long Island woman's autopsy helped explain how the woman her family called "an accomplished working mother who always put her children before any other priorities" wound up driving the wrong way for nearly two miles on a suburban parkway before slamming into the SUV.

The July 26 crash on the Taconic State Parkway, about 35 miles northwest of New York City, also killed three men in the SUV. Schuler's 5-year-old son, in her minivan, survived.

Investigators said Schuler had been driving erratically on other upstate roads before getting on the highway for the 140-mile trip home.

Schuler's blood-alcohol level was well above the legal limit, and she still had undigested alcohol in her stomach, State Police Maj. William Carey said Tuesday.

Blood tests also showed she had smoked marijuana 15 minutes to an hour before the crash, said Betsy Spratt, chief toxicologist for the Westchester County medical examiner.

"With that level of alcohol ... she would have had difficulty with perception, with her judgment, with her memory," Spratt said. "You start to get what we call tunnel vision."

Police said no criminal charges were planned in the case.

Roseann Guzzo, whose father and brother were killed in the SUV, said Tuesday her family wanted to meet with prosecutors to discuss the case.

"We're outraged by it," she said. "It's a choice she made. And that choice she made to us is like she committed murder."

State police have been investigating why Schuler, who was a regular upstate campground visitor, would have been driving toward her home the wrong way on a highway she had driven many times before.

Toxicology reports found the businesswoman's blood-alcohol level was 0.19, more than twice the state's legal limit of 0.08, Carey said. She also had 6 grams of undigested alcohol in her stomach, Carey said.

Schuler's husband, Daniel, told investigators that everything seemed fine when he and his wife left the Sullivan County campground at about 9:30 a.m. on the morning of the crash. He went on a fishing trip while his wife headed home with the children, stopping at a McDonald's on the way, police said.

Her brother, the father of the three girls who died, said she called him about a half-hour before the wreck sounding disoriented and saying she didn't feel well. Schuler's 8-year-old niece also spoke briefly with her father from the highway. The woman's cell phone was later found abandoned at a rest stop.

Witnesses said they saw Schuler's minivan straddling two lanes and tailgating, with its headlights flashing and horn beeping.

Others saw the vehicle veering from one lane to another, and one witness said it appeared as if she was attempting to pass him on the shoulder of the highway. Another witness said the van drove across a grass divider at a service area.

Six drivers called 911 before the collision, which happened after Schuler drove 1.7 miles south in the parkway's northbound lane.

An attorney who served as a family spokesman at funerals last week did not immediately return a telephone message left by The Associated Press on Tuesday.

Floral Park village police blocked access to the home of Schuler's brother and said no one was there to comment. There was no answer when a reporter knocked on the door of the Schuler family home in West Babylon.

Neither Schuler's husband nor extended family has spoken with reporters about the crash. The families issued a statement last week calling Schuler "a devoted mother to her children, Bryan and Erin."

"She was a constant, doting presence in her nieces' lives, and our extended family admired her competence, ease with children and sense of humor," it said. "Never has there been a more responsible and trusted friend or caregiver."

Read more:

Monday, August 3, 2009

Antidepressant use doubles in U.S., study finds

Antidepressant use doubles in U.S., study finds

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Use of antidepressant drugs in the United States doubled between 1996 and 2005, probably because of a mix of factors, researchers reported on Monday.

About 6 percent of people were prescribed an antidepressant in 1996 -- 13 million people. This rose to more than 10 percent or 27 million people by 2005, the researchers found.

"Significant increases in antidepressant use were evident across all sociodemographic groups examined, except African Americans," Dr. Mark Olfson of Columbia University in New York and Steven Marcus of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia wrote in the Archives of General Psychiatry.

"Not only are more U.S. residents being treated with antidepressants, but also those who are being treated are receiving more antidepressant prescriptions," they added.

More than 164 million prescriptions were written in 2008 for antidepressants, totaling $9.6 billion in U.S. sales, according to IMS Health.

Drugs that affect the brain chemical serotonin like GlaxoSmithKline's Paxil, known generically as paroxetine, and Eli Lilly and Co's Prozac, known generically as fluoxetine, are the most commonly prescribed class of antidepressant. But the study found the effect in all classes of the drugs.

Olfson and Marcus looked at the Medical Expenditure Panel Surveys done by the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, involving more than 50,000 people in 1996 and 2005.

"During this period, individuals treated with antidepressants became more likely to also receive treatment with antipsychotic medications and less likely to undergo psychotherapy," they wrote.


The survey did not look at why, but the researchers made some educated guesses. It may be more socially acceptable to be diagnosed with and treated for depression, they said. The availability of new drugs may also have been a factor.

"Although there was little change in total promotional spending for antidepressants between 1999 ($0.98 billion) and 2005 ($1.02 billion), there was a marked increase in the percentage of this spending that was devoted to direct-to consumer advertising, from 3.3 percent ($32 million) to 12 percent ($122.00 million)," they added.

Dr. Eric Caine of the University of Rochester in New York said he was concerned by the findings. "Antidepressants are only moderately effective on population level," he said in a telephone interview.

Caine, who was not involved in the research, noted that several studies show therapy is as effective as, if not more effective than, drug use alone.

"There are no data to say that the population is healthier. Indeed, the suicide rate in the middle years of life has been climbing," he said.

Olfson and Marcus said out-of-pocket costs for psychotherapy and lower insurance coverage for such visits may have driven patients away from seeing therapists in favor of an easy-to-prescribe pill.

The rise in antidepressant prescriptions also is seen despite a series of public health warnings on use of antidepressant drugs beginning in 2003 after clinical trials showed they increased the risk of suicidal thoughts and behaviors in children and teens.

In February 2005, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration added its strongest warning, a so-called black box, on the use of all antidepressants in children and teens.

Friday, July 31, 2009

It is the first week

It is the first weekend in long time i am home and NO PLANS..... AHHHHHH everyday should be like that..

Monday, July 27, 2009

I am meeting all day

I am meeting all day with John Southworth the GURU of Interventions and Monitoring Addiction… My lucky day…

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Barnes & Noble 829 S

Barnes & Noble 829 State Street Santa Barbara, CA 805-962-8509 Book signing 6pm Friday night... Looking forward to it!!

Are you in Santa Bar

Are you in Santa Barbara, CA? Tonight 7pm Double Tree Resort ask questions to Interventionist Panel and Book Signing. I hope to see you there.. 805-564-4333

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Are you in Santa Bar

Are you in Santa Barbara, CA? Thursday night 7pm Double Tree Resort ask questions to Interventionist Panel. I hope to see you there!! 805-564-4333

Monday, July 20, 2009

Yes the concerns abo

Yes the concerns about me not being 20 years old are true. In AA in CA we call them birthdays when we have another year sober. I have 20 years sober in AA is what I was saying. Sorry for the misunderstanding...

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Thank you to my pare

Thank you to my parents from NY, in laws, sister in law, nephews from Boston and friends from FL to come visit with me during my 20th Birthday..

This is a great Birt

This is a great Birthday week... Tuesday I hit 20 years in AA... I love that program...

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Friday, July 10, 2009

Rick Sanchez on 12:3

Rick Sanchez on 12:30 Pacific time live CNN 3-4 Eastern Time HLN with Jane Velez Mitchell 4pm Pacific time 7-8 Eastern Time

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Monday, July 6, 2009

working in Boise tod

working in Boise today.. Don't forget to tell your friends tonight 9PM new INTERVENTION...

Friday, July 3, 2009

Have a great 4th of

Have a great 4th of July weekend, don't forget to watch the New INTERVENTION Show Monday 9pm A&E

Monday, June 29, 2009

A family begins to heal

Please accept this as testimonial for the Staff of Intervention 911. After ten years of desperation, and anguish over our son and his addiction to drugs…we finally figured it out ! We could not fix him, love him, scare him, push him, reward him, cajole him, counsel him, threaten him, shove him or any other verb you can think of him into getting better. The addiction won..every single time.

As we watched our family suffer more and more, and watched Mitch suffer more and more, with increasingly dangerous consequences (including a motorcycle accident and a subsequent fourteen month, five surgery hospitalization) our desperation reached a point of hopelessness. What could we do? What in God’s name could we do? Would he die, become homeless, get worse, break the law, go to jail, hurt someone…what else could possibly happen to make him see he needed help?

But where to start? Who could we trust to bring our only son to treatment? We chose Intervention 911.

I made the call, which was the scariest call of my life. A million questions swirled in my mind. My heart broke to think this is what we had come to. Would it work? Would he go? What would happen? How would it happen? Where would he go? Where should he go? And for how long? In less than 5 hours, I got a call from John Nosack. I felt an immediate sense of calm as he explained the process to me. He literally held my hand in the days up to the intervention. Always there, always caring, always reassuring. I love the man and always will because of this. He helped us select a facility, and most importantly selected an Interventionist that would “fit” our son’s needs. Even after the intervention, he has been there when I need a touchstone of reassurance. I wonder, where in the world did you find such a human being that can give so much to people he does not even know? John Nosack will forever hold a corner of our hearts. Forever.

Then I got to speak with Jerry Bowling, the Interventionist. What can I say about Jerry that you probably don’t already know? Jerry is a blessing in our lives. After a million and one phone calls to him before the intervention day, arranging, crying, being scared, being mad, flipping out, questioning our decision, feelings of hysteria and hope (how those two go together I will never know but they do) were put into perspective with Jerry’s calming, and firm but gentle presence. His message was consistent: you are doing the right thing, stay strong, you can do this, you are doing the right thing, you are doing the right thing, you are doing the right thing. What I love the most about Jerry is his tenacity. He told us “this might take five minutes, or it might take five days. And I’ll be here as long as it takes”. This is more than we could have ever expected. But we received it with Jerry. Thankfully, it didn’t take five days (!!!) and Jerry flew with our son across the country to deliver him safely to what we pray will be his eventual path to recovery. But it doesn’t stop there. Jerry is still there for us. Still tenacious, still supportive, still knowing what we need to do and hear from him fight our son’s disease. Because of Jerry, WE are able to fight. Because of Jerry we know that unless we change, our son does not have a chance in you-know-where to change. Because of Jerry, we have hope. And hope is a commodity that any family suffering along with their addict must have to survive. We hope for our son, and ultimately have more hope for ourselves, as truly we need to recover to have the hope that our son will too. Because of Jerry we have learned to detach, with love, from our addiction to our son’s addiction, the source of the chaos in our lives. Because of Jerry we know we must CHANGE for our son to CHANGE, and that it doesn’t necessarily mean it happens at the same time for us and him. And that it’s OK. Have you gotten the impression that Jerry means a lot to us? He is our general and we are the soldiers in the war. That’s who Jerry is to us.

I can only pray that other suffering families will meet Jerry and John. They have punctuated our lives with HOPE, where there was none. I hope they can be strong enough to make the call, strong enough to lay aside their fear for just one moment and make the call to Intervention 911. We do not know what the future holds for our son and his journey. But now at least, we know we did everything humanly possible to right his path. Thank you seems not a strong enough statement to express our gratitude. Bless that’s better !

Sunday, June 28, 2009

I love my job..... J

I love my job..... Just finished helping a family and to see hope is amazing when it has been lost for so long.. Thank you God...

Friday, June 26, 2009

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Dinner at Street on

Dinner at Street on Highland tonight, food REALLY GOOD. Town is very quiet mourning.. Respects to the families..

A sad day the world

A sad day the world lost some talented people today. Praying for the families.. RIP

Friday, June 19, 2009

Thanks for all the p

Thanks for all the prayers for my bro in law.. He is in rehab and it will be a long road but looking really good... YOUR PRAYER WORK!! Thanks again..

Tuesday night I seen

Tuesday night I seen Justin Timberlake eating dinner in the big apple.. Love NYC..

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Things are looking u

Things are looking up for the Bro in law.. Yesterdays surgery went great! Your prayer work!! Thank you..

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Thank you all for yo

Thank you all for your prayers.. One more surgery and we will know results then when the swelling goes down & healing process takes place… THANKS AGIAIN!!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Latest Episode of Intervention

Check out the latest episode of intervention. Everyone is talking about it:

Sunday, June 7, 2009

My brother-in-law fe

My brother-in-law fell out of tree transported to 2 different hopitals by helicopter. I am taking redeye to NYC to be with family. Please keep him/them in your Prayers..

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Friday, June 5, 2009

I am sitting in gre

I am sitting in green room of cnn in nyc with Lisa Sharkey waiting to talk about my book on the Jane Velez Mitchell show.... i love ny...

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Heading to NYC in th

Heading to NYC in the morning to be on Mike and Juliet and some radio interviews about my book Thanks for the support.. Lets help some people out there.....

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Tell all your friend

Tell all your friends about Intervention A&E Monday 9pm. My Dad is a retired fireman, this story strikes the heart.. See how you can help somenone you love from an addiction... Please tell everyone you know to watch it. Twitter and Facebook all your friends.. Thanks!!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Friday, May 22, 2009

Click on link for Video of Graduation

"Intervention" star speaks at drug court graduation
Small | Medium | Large

Video By: Kirk Barron
Edited By: Kirk Barron
Published at: May 20, 2009 08:00 PM
Ken Seeley, founder of Intervention 911 and star of the hit A&E television show "Intervention," visited Stockton on May 20 for the San Joaquin County Drug Court's 2009 graduation and encouraged graduates to stay involved in the program to get through the challenges of overcoming their addictions.

Intervention911: Drug Court Graduation

Drug Court Graduation

Hope rules stage at the Hope
Print this Article Email this Article Text Size: A | A | A

By Scott Smith
Record Staff Writer
May 21, 2009 6:00 AM

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Was in N. CA yesterd

Was in N. CA yesterday Drug Court Graduation..

How can we help our heroes?

Army blasted for letting drug abusers slide
WASHINGTON — Army commanders are failing to punish or seek treatment for a growing number of soldiers who test positive for substance abuse, possibly because they don't want to lose any more combat troops, the Army's vice chief of staff has warned.
In a May 8 memo to commanders provided to USA TODAY, Gen. Peter Chiarelli said hundreds of soldiers involved in "substance abuse-related misconduct (including multiple positive urinalyses)" were not processed for possible discharge. He also noted that many are not referred to the Army Substance Abuse Program for help.

WAR SPENDING: Addition to bill raises questions

What "worries me the most is that commanders feel a requirement to keep their numbers up" for combat deployments, Chiarelli said in a meeting with top staff officers Monday. He said non-commissioned officers told him this during visits to six Army installations recently to examine strain on soldiers and address the record number of suicides in the Army.

He says identifying and treating substance abuse will help improve the Army's mental health care and curb suicides, which reached a record 142 confirmed or suspected cases in 2008.

FIND MORE STORIES IN: United States | Claire McCaskill | Rand | Gannett Company
He found many cases where soldiers tested positive for substance more than once, Chiarelli wrote in the memo.

At one installation where about a thousand soldiers screened positive by urinalysis, 373 had failed the same drug test in the past, in some cases up to seven times, says Brig Gen. Colleen McGuire, head of the Army's Suicide Prevention Task Force. Other installations reported similar numbers, she says.

"I am asking you to ensure that soldiers are provided the help that they need when they need it," he told commanders in the memo, "and that regulatory requirements regarding the referral and initiation of separation processing of substance abusers are enforced."

In January, with 24 possible suicides, more soldiers killed themselves than died in combat. Since March, numbers appear to be declining, though Chiarelli cautioned against being overly optimistic.

Sen. Claire McCaskill, who introduced a bill to improve military substance abuse treatment, says she was encouraged by Chiarelli's action but cautioned against placing too much emphasis on punishment over treatment.

"Army leaders seem to have finally gotten the message," says McCaskill, D-Mo.

USA TODAY reported a 25% increase in five years among soldiers treated for substance abuse.

Military drug and alcohol counseling programs were created by Congress in 1971 after reports of widespread drug abuse among troops in Vietnam.

The military needs a greater understanding of substance abuse, says Terri Tanielian, co-author of a RAND Corp. study last year into war-related mental health and brain injury cases. "I just don't think we know enough," she says.

Army leaders have launched several efforts to stop the rising number of suicides, including suicide-awareness training for soldiers and the suicide prevention task force.

Chiarelli, who oversees the efforts, is personally briefed each month on every new suicide. He assembles top Army commanders in a Pentagon briefing room where they receive details of each case by video-teleconference and discuss lessons learned and possible intervention strategies.