Thursday, April 30, 2009

Cigarette use by Genesee County 11th graders drops from 35% to 12.8% in 8 years.

This morning, Tuesday, 04/28/09, Smoke Free NOW sponsored its annual recognition breakfast at Terry Hills Party House in Batavia, NY and it was well attended with over 100 people.

Rick Stoddard gave an inspiring talk about erradicating tobacco from our society. He began his crusade after his wife Marie died from cancer at age 46. You can learn more about Rick by clicking here.

In reviewing our Prevention Needs Assessment data at GCASA, I noticed that the percentage of 11th graders who reported smoking cigarettes in the previous 30 days in 2000 was 35%. In 2008, it was 12.8%. What do you make of this tremendous drop by 2/3rds in the last 8 years?

I have my own ideas, but for now I am more interested in yours. Please leave a comment about what you think is going on.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Caption this in six words

Six word caption for this picture. Leave in comments

Best entry, $10.00 gift certificate to subway. Last date for submissions 05/06/09

Free Book of the week - Addiction & Recovery For Dummies

Free book of the week is Addiction and Recovery For Dummies. There are limited quanities and are available first come, first serve. If you want a copy send me an email at with your name and address.

This is article #4 in a series on Free Books.

GCASA loves its volunteers

At GCASA we have multiple kinds of volunteers.

We have volunteers who serve on our boards.

We have volunteers who come regularly to help with various activities and functions.

We have students and interns who do their field work with us for one or two semesters.

We have one time volunteers like the United Way Day Of Caring volunteers.

However, they volunteer, we, at GCASA, are very grateful for the time, energy, work, and skills people donate to help us carry out our mission to improve community health, reduce stigma towards people with substance abuse disorders, and work across systems for positive community change.

Here is a recent ad which appeared in the Daily News last Thursday, 04/23/09, acknowledging and thanking the volunteers on our GCASA Operations Corporation board, and our GCASA Foundation Board.

Click on the image to enlarge for easier reading.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

2009 High School Graduates in Genesee, Livingston, Orleans, and Wyoming counties can take two college courses this summer free at GCC

2009 High School Graduates in Genesee, Orleans, Wyoming, and Livingston county can take 2 college courses free this summer at GCC.

Click on image to enlarge for easier reading.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Mental Health Association of Genesee County 15th Annual Meeting on May 12, 2009

The Mental Health Association of Genesee County will be holding its 15th annual meeting on Tuesday, May 12, 2009, from 12 - 1:30 PM at 15 Center St. in Downtown Batavia, NY.

Click on image to enlarge for easier reading.

Who is at risk of substance abuse disorders? How did you grow up?

"There are between 28 and 34 million children and adults in America, today, who are unique. They are unique in that they are more likely than any other identifiable group to become alcoholic, They are the people who grew up, or are presently being raised, in alcoholic homes."

Claudia Black, It Will Never Happen To Me, p. 4

Dr. Black's book from which the above quote was taken was published in 1981. Nothing has changed since except, I suspect, the number of vulnerable people to develop alcoholism is larger.

GCASA was a relatively large and effective prevention program and the funders of GCASA's prevention programs mandate that we focus on youth, but youth often are not the problem; it is the parents and other adults in the community who behave in irresponsible ways when it comes to alcohol and drugs.

60% of GCASA's treatment admissions in 2008 which numbered over 1,000 people reported that they grew up in families where alcohol or drugs were a problem.

Commercials and advertising glorify the use of alcohol, tobacco, gambling as the way to enjoy life. While the social use of these substances and activities may not be harmful, use can easily become abuse, and abuse can become dependence and then great harm can be done.

Cultural norms and attitudes have slowly been changing and yet we, as a society, have a long way to go in questioning the role these substances and behaviors play in our society and the consequences that the use of these substances and behaviors have on not only our individual health, but the health of our communities and society.
This is article #5 in a series on Substance Abuse, A Family Disease.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Who can a 15 year old talk to about drugs?

Video lasts :30.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Substance is not only a family disease but it is transgenerational

Claudia Black in her book, "It Will Never Happen To Me", writes, "While children of alcoholics are at high risk to become alcoholic, research demonstrates children of alcoholics are often prone to marry those who are, or become, alcoholic. In addition, my own research demonstrates that should a child of an alcoholic neither beocme alcoholic, nor marry an alcoholic, emotional and/or psychological patterns develop which may cause problems for this person in adulthood." p.xv

I have seen people who marry three times all to alcoholic partners. It is an uncanny phenomenon that most marriage and family counselors with 10 years or more of experience have witnessed.

The explanation, of course, is that the ACOA has learned habitual patterns of behavior as a child growing up and the person tends to continue to look for people unconsciously with whom they can participate in these familiar patterns.

The psychological legacy unconsciously transmitted to children from their family of origin is made up of the values, opinions, beliefs, and practices which they participated in and absorbed like little sponges. It is not until a person gets older do they begin to question whether they want to raise their children the same way they were raised or do it different. Murry Bowen, a psychiatrist who pioneered in family therapy, called it differentiation, meaning the degree to which a person becomes consciously aware of his/her psychological legacy and makes a conscious choice about what values, opinions, beliefs, and practices the person wants to continue and the ones the person wants to change. It is this conscious choice that Bowen believed contributed to a person's mental health. The more conscious one is of one's psychological legacy and the degree to which a person takes a stand on the values, beliefs, opinions, and practices, the person wants to live their life by, the more differentiated they will be and the more mentally healthy.

Claudia Black's point that children of alcoholics seem to continue with the dysfunctional values, opinions, beliefs, and practices of their family of origin has been demonstrated repeatedly. At GCASA about 60% of the admissions to GCASA's treatment programs report that they grew up in alcohol and drug abusing families.

The disease of substance abuse is clearly a transgenerational phenonmenon and unless the whole family gets treatment, it is more likely that the disease will be transmitted to successive generations.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Children of Alcoholics

I have started reading Jerry Moe's book entitled, "Understanding Addiction and Recovery Through a Child's Eyes" and he says in the introduction: "For thirty years I have had a front row seat in group, watching, learning, and helping these youngest victims of addicted families. They live with a legacy that can break hearts and destroy souls - one they did not choose but was thrust upon them by the adults around them." p. xiii

I resonated with Jerry's paragraph because I have been involved with children from dysfunctional families for over 40 years and many of the staff at GCASA have been witnesses to the devastation, the pain, the suffering and sorrow and have the courage and interest and compassion to walk with these children as they try to make sense out of world that is over unpredictable, out of control, abusive, and scary.

The idea that substance abuse is a family disease cannot be overstated because its impact is at times overwhelming. The professionals who stand as witnesses to these situations are courageous and strong in their ability to identify dysfunction and disease and to attempt to assess and treat it.

Video lasts 57:04

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Alcoholism the family disease: It will never happen to me

I went into the Lift Bridge bookstore this afternoon, Sunday, April 19th, 2009, and there on the shelf is the 1981 book entitled "It Will Never Happen To Me" by Claudia Black which is a classic and pioneering book on Children Of Alcoholics. For $6.99 it is quite a bargain and so I bought it and decided to re-read it since I am rejuvenating my interest in Addiction as a family disease.

I recommend the book to you and if you have a copy or will buy a copy we can discuss it here on the GCASA Cares blog. I will be tagging these posts, Claudia Black, and I will post a series of reflections on her writing in this book. I hope that you will join in the conversation.

Claudia writes in the introduction: "Only 3 to 5 percent of the alcoholic people in the U.S, are represented by the stereotyped Skid Row drinker. The so-called average alcoholic is a man or woman with family, job, and responsibilities."

Dr. Black already pointed out that one out or six families in the United States is affected by alcoholism and I think this is a very conservative estimate.

GCASA's data from Genesee and Orleans counties finds that about 30% of 12th graders report that they have binge drank (5 drinks or more on a single occasion) in the last 2 weeks. My question has always been where are these kids getting this kind of alcohol and where are they drinking it. The answer which research has found is at home.

Alcoholism is a family disease and in 60% of people in treatment at GCASA say that they come from families where alcohol was a problem as they were growing up.

Most of GCASA's prevention programs focus on young people, but I am increasingly convinced that the young people would not be manifesting anywhere near the dysfunctional symptoms they are were it not for the problems in their families.

Drinking is glamorized in our culture and is constantly advertised to us as the way to enjoy life. It doesn't take much intelligence to deconstruct these ads and see the perverse messages they send to adults and young people that the way to enjoy the good life is to drink. Parents rarely object to these insidious messages while they are quickly outraged by sexual and violent material.

As the title of Claudia Black's title suggests, those of us who are somewhat aware of these pernicious and damaging cultural memes, we reasure ourselves that "It will never happen to me" and all to often find ourselves caught up in addiction either ourselves or marrying someone who becomes addicted or has a family history of the disease.

The most recent Budweiser ad campaign promises that its beer has "drinkability". Can you tell me what that is? What is that to your children? How many of these commercials have they seen. Have you discussed what "drinkability" means to them?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Orleans County United Against Substance Abuse to meet on April 28th

Orleans United Against Substance Abuse will be holding its next meeting on Tuesday, April 28th, 2009, at 2:00PM at the Cornell Cooperative Extension at the Orleans County Fairgrounds on Rt. 31 west of Albion, NY.

Click on image for easier reading.

Habits become character and when character deteriorates, culture does along with it.

Theodore Dalrymple had a wonderful essay in the Autumn, 2008 issue of City Journal entitled "The Quivering Upper Lip". Dalrymple is a physician who is very familiar with English culture and he observes the remarkable deterioration of civilized behavior in one generation in that country. He ends his essay with these words:

Habits become character. Perhaps they shouldn’t, but they do. Therefore, when I hear that some American states seek to lower the drinking age from 21 to 18, on the grounds that it is absurd that an 18-year-old can join the army and die for his country but not drink a beer in a public bar, I experience a strong reaction. It is a more important goal of government to uphold civilization than to find a general principle that will iron out all the apparent inconsistencies of the current dispensation.

Not long ago, I attended the graduation of a friend’s son at an upstate New York university. The night before, and the night after, I observed the students through the windows of their frat houses getting drunk. They were behaving in a silly way, but they were not causing a public nuisance because they did not dare to step out of their houses. If they did, the local police would arrest them; or, if not, the university authorities would catch them and suspend them. (This, incidentally, is powerful evidence that drunks do know what they are doing and that the law is absolutely right not to accept drunkenness as a negation of mens rea.)

No doubt the student drunkenness in the frat houses was unsatisfactory from an abstract point of view; but from the point of view of upholding civilization, to say nothing of the quality of life of the townspeople, it was all highly satisfactory. In England, that town would have been a nightmare at night that no decent person would have wanted to be out in.

So I say to Americans: if you want your young people to develop character, have the courage of your inconsistencies! Excoriate sin, especially in public places, but turn a blind eye to it when necessary—as it often is.

I live in Brockport, NY a college town, and when I walk the two blocks from my home to my private office to see private clients on Saturday mornings through the downtown village there is vomit on the sidewalk from college students who have overindulged in village bars.

Over the years, while it has gotten better the drunken behavior of college students has driven families from the village with potted plants being stolen from porches, students urinating on doorways in in bushes on neighborhood lawns, and noise at 2:00 AM that would make one believe he/she was in New Orleans for the Mardi Gras.

The fact is that while 18 year olds are still innocent and naive enough to want to go and die for their country at the behest of deluded politicians intent on staying in power, they are not mature enough to hold their liquor in a responsibile way. When a 19 year old student at Geneseo is provoked by his frat buddies to literally drink himself to death with a BAC of .55 while they turn away and let him die, it makes one wonder what our civilization has come to.

Thankfully, there are some people in our culture who still advocate for decency and responsible behavior. You would think we could expect the same from educators such as College presidents, but alas, they support lowering the drinking age to 18 which has already proven to be deadly for too many adolescents.

At GCASA, we support 21, responsible use of alcohol, and civilization.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Volunteer community clean-up opportunity for 6 - 12 graders at Pringle Park May 2

Click on image to enlarge for easier reading.

SUPA, Students United For Positive Action and the Drug Free Communities Coalition of Genesee County is organizing a park clean-up at Pringle Park in Batavia on Saturday, May 2, 2009 from 11:00 AM - 2:30 PM. Lunch will be provided.

Register by April 30, 2009 by calling Kevin Keenan at 585-815-1875 and/or emailing him at

For a good time and to contribute to the well being of your community volunteer to help with this important community beautification event.

Click on image to enlarge for easier reading.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Even Superior Court Judges drive drunk - Celebrity DWIs

Enforcing DWI laws is a difficult job for police officers. Here is the transcript of such an arrest that occured in Glastonbury, Connecticut on October 10, 2008 when a Connecticut State Trooper had the unfortunate job of having to arrest a State Superior Court Judge. To read about the nonsense that goes on, there is a brief transcript of the interview. To access the whole interview, click here.

From a video recorded shortly after midnight on October 10 at police headquarters in Glastonbury, Connecticut. State Superior Court Judge E. Curtissa Cofield was pulled over earlier that night after her car sideswiped a parked police cruiser occupied by Trooper Michael Kowal. Cofield, who smelled of alcohol, was arrested and taken to police headquarters by Kowal, who is white, and was processed by Sergeant Dwight Washington, an African American. She was eventually found to have a blood alcohol level of 0.16, twice the state’s legal limit. Cofield, sixty, became the state’s first female African-American judge in 1991. After the incident, Cofield entered an alcohol education program, and charges against her will be dropped upon completion. In February, she was suspended from the Connecticut Superior Court for 240 days.

Every year GCASA honors the law enforcement personnel who make our roads safer and who have to deal with the abuse and harassment by drunk offenders even judges and politicians who choose to drive drunk. These men and women who enforce our laws to keep us all safer deserve our recognition, acknowledgement, support, and gratitude. Please join us on June 12, 2009 in Batavia, NY when we honor our men and women in blue. For more information, click here.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Substance Abuse A Family Disease - transgenerational problems

Husband: She says I drink too much some time but I grew up in a house where my dad drank all the time and my mother did too until she quit and then they faught about my dad's drinking all the time, and I don't drink anywhere as much as my dad.

Wife: Yeah, Bill still drinks and then he's mean to Helen and I want to go home but by that time John has had too many and he doesn't want to go so we fight. I told him I'm not going over to his parent's house any more and that he needs to talk to them.

Husband: Well, I tell her that it's between her and them, I don't want to be in the middle of it.

Wife: I wish he would be a man. It's his job, not mine. They hate me and say that everything is my fault.

Husband: Yeah, they think she thinks she's too good for us.

Wife: I just don't like the drinking and the meaness, and I don't like the kids seeing it either.

Husband: So, don't go. Just me and the kids will go.

Wife: (To the counselor)See what I mean. I don't know what to do!

Counselor: Please fill in the blank by writing your response under comments.
This is article #4 in a series on Substance Abuse A Family Disease.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Substance abuse a family disease - emotional systems

In Western Civilization in the last 100 years with the ascendency of psychology, human behavior has been described and studied as an intra-psychic phenomenon. A person does what he/she does because of the kind of personality he/she has. We believe that if we want to predict how a person will behave in the future or explain why they behaved the way they did in the past, we can study their personality traits to understand “what makes them tick” and develop such an understanding and gain some control over predicting future behavior.

While this model of intra-psychic functioning is somewhat helpful, a more powerful undersanding has developed in the last 30 years called “systems theory.” A person participates in multiple emotional systems and it is in understanding the rules and roles that a person follows and plays in the system which is a more accurate tool for understanding past behavior and predicting future behavior. In the substance abuse field, substance abuse professionals have been aware of this phenomenon for years coaching individuals in recovery to change their “people, places, and things” if they want to avoid the triggers for relapse.

A key concept is that emotional systems seek equilibrium, homeostasis and balance, even dysfunctional balance. Once dysfunctional systems have stabilized around their dysfunctional rules and roles they are very difficult to change. An abrupt change is experienced as a “crisis” and they will work to restabilize in familiar patterns even when those patterns are hurtful and have negative consequences.

There is some evidence that alcoholic marriages will end in divorce after the drinking spouse gets into recovery. This finding is counter- intuitive and contradicts what everyone says they want, but the readjustment of a couple to an abstinent life style is so difficult that most dysfunctional couples cannot successfully make that transition unless they are able to renegotiate the rules and roles of their marriage contract which is usually unconscious.

Substance abuse professionals are usually not trained family and marital therapists and therefore there is a tendency to focus on the individual and intra-psychic and medical aspects of treatment and ignore the interpersonal and family aspects of recovery and yet, in reflecting on my practice of 40 years, it is my observation that a great deal of relapse is related to family and interpersonal factors. Conceptualizing the problems as being influenced by factors in the emotional systems in which the client is functioning is a very helpful way to understand the problems being dealt with in treatment and to design efficient and effective treatment activities.

This is article #3 in a series on Substance Abuse a Family Disease.

Are you as Smart As A Substance Abuse Professional? BAC

Question: How much does a standard drink raise you blood alcohol level per hour?


A .20

B .02

C .08

D. 1.0

For the correct answer, click on comments.

This is article #35 in a series on Are You As Smart As A Substance Abuse Professional?

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Free book of the week - Helping the Addict You Love

The GCASA Cares free book of the week is Helping The Addict You Love: The New Effective Program For Getting The Addict Into Treatment by Laurence M. Westreich, M.D.. You can read more about the book by going to the Amazon web site by clicking here.

If you want a copy of the book, send me an email to Copies are limited.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Substance abuse the family disease - Adult Children Of Alcoholics

There is quite a literature on Children of Alcoholics and Adult Children of Alcoholics and I do not want to review that literature here. If you are interested in it you can "google" it or go to Amazon and enter the key words and find all the books that are available on the topic. In this brief post I just want to mention a few observations that I have made over my 40 years of practice.

First, the most impressive observation is that ACOA's often have difficulty in knowing what's "normal". The come into my private counseling office with complaints about depression, anxiety, anger, perfectionism, relationship problems, work problems, parent/child problems, and they ask the simplest questions and usually end their story of distress by asking, "Is this normal?" The answer is "No!" and I used to be stunned that they didn't know and that they even have to ask. Then it dawned on me, how would they know? They grew up in dysfunction. There is no template, no model which they have personal experience with that they can compare their current experience with. ACOA's often have poor boundaries for this very reason, that they are filled with confusion since they are flying blind.

People in this situation need a trusted "other" whom they can bounce things off of to receive feedback about what is normal and what is not normal. It is a challenge for an ACOA to even ask for help because they have learned growing up in their dysfunctional families the "don't talk", "don't think", "don't feel", "don't ask" rules so common in alcoholic and drug addicted families.

While ACOAs have some deficits they also have many strengths. They can spot problems at 1,000 yards. They are very good at organizing order in crisis and chaos. They often are very caring, eager to please, and are very dedicated and loyal usually to a fault. ACOAs often go into human service, health care, criminal justice type work where they deal with problems and crises.

The effects of alcoholism on a family can go on for years and even generations. In the field of substance abuse services we pay lip service to this idea, but often focus only on the acute stages of the disease and overlook the longer term residual consequences. However, help is available in many places but the best place to start a search for assistance would be to look for a good trained family counselor.

This is article #2 in a series on substance abuse the family disease.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Today is voting day

Please vote for your favorite comment on a blog post between 04/02 and 4/13/09. The comment which gets the most votes will win a $10.00 gift certificate to Subway.

You can vote by leaving your designation as a comment to this post by mentioning the title of the post and the date it appeared on the blog.

Here is an explanation which occured earlier on the blog.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Substance abuse the family disease

How do you change your people, places, and things when you are in recovery when most of your family uses?

Supposing you grew up in a family where alcohol, drugs, and gambling are an ingrained part of the family culture?

Recovery, in these situations, involves not only abstinence, AA, and other kinds of treatment services, but family of origin work as well.

I am starting a new category of posts on this blog tagged "family disease". These will deal with information concerning alcoholism and substance abuse being not just an individual problem but behavior which developed, is maintained, and sustained, and impacts the family system.

To use alcohol as an example, the trouble that alcohol causes is not only detrimental to the well being of the person abusing but to everyone that person is in relationship with. Buddhists describe the importance of "right relationship" and engaging in, developing, and sustaining a "right relationship" is very diffcult, if not impossible, when chemicals, and other addictive behaviors are involved.

Let us know what you think about this idea of substance abuse being a family disease.

This is article #1 in a series on substance abuse, the family disease.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Drunk driving arrests in Genesee County decrease 25% since 2004

The Daily News reported on the Genesee County Sheriff's annual report on 04/06/09. In the print edition it had a need little graphic which depicted the number of DWI arrests over the last five years. The number of arrests is as follows:

2004 = 289
2005 = 236
2006 = 270
2007 = 208
2008 = 217

There has been a 25% drop in DWI arrests from 2004 to 2008. It is difficult to know if this drop in DWI arrests is a function of less people driving drunk or resources devoted to enforcement.

Thankfully, there has not been a DWI fatality in Genesee County for several years.

The Genesee County Sheriff's department, the Batavia, and LeRoy police departments do an excellent job in enforcing the DWI laws keeping our roads safe for our citizens.

However, 217 arrests in Genesee County is the tip of the iceberg when it comes to people who actually drive while under the influence and it certainly is 217 too many. I look foward to the day when the there is absolutely no drunk drunking and our society has a zero tolerance for drunk driving as it does for people under 21.

GCASA operates a victim impact panel monthly which has about 30 participants per month from Orleans, Genesee, and Wyoming Counties. GCASA also sponsors and annual dinner where the good work of our local officers is acknowledged who enforce our drunk driving laws. This year the dinner will be on 06/12/09. You can learn more by clicking here.

To learn more about GCASA's Victim Impact Panel, click here.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

58 drug dealers arrested in Genesee County in 2008

The Daily News reported on 04/06/09 on the Genesee County Sheriff's 2008 report. Sheriff Maha reported that drug related arrests increased signficantly in 2008 when the department made 58 arrests as compared to 32 in 2007.

Here is a snippet from the Daily News article:

Drug Task Force activity increased significantly in 2008. Officers made 58 drug-related arrests, up from 32 the previous year. Task force officers also initiated 81 cases, up from 55 in 2007.

To read the rest of the Daily News article, click here.

GCASA applauds Sheriff Maha, his deputies, and the other police agencies in Genesee County in enforcing the law and decreasing the supply of illegal drugs in Genesee County.

This is article #4 in series on drug dealers.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Comment contest - Vote on 4/14/09

Don't forget the comment contest which is going on right now.

Audio lasts 1:28

50 year old LeRoy woman arrested for selling fentanyl patches

LeRoy police arrest a 50 year old woman for alledgedly selling Fentanyl patches. It is not clear whether these were involved in a 53 year old woman's death.

To read more about the story, click here.

This is article #3 in a series on drug dealers.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

17 suspected Orleans County drug dealers identified

The Daily News reported on April 2, 2009 on the identities of the 17 drug dealer suspects in Orleans County who were arrested in drug raids. You can read the story by clicking here.

This is article #2 in a series on drug dealers.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Genesee County Sheriff, Gary Maha, reports 217 DWI arrests in Genesee County in 2008

According to Genesee County Sheriff, Gary Maha's 2008 report, there were 217 DWI arrests in Genesee County in 2008 up nine from the previous year.

Here is a snippet from the 04/06/09 Daily News article about the report:

The number of DWI arrests remained stable, with deputies making 217 arrests, up nine from 2007.

To read the whole article, click here.

Free book of the week - The Glass Castle

We talk about alcoholism being a family disease. Jeannette Walls makes this idea come alive putting a face on human suffering and tragedy in her memoir, The Glass Castle.

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls is the memoir of Jeannette's life growing up in a dysfunctional family. Jeannette has an older sister, Lori, and a younger brother, Brian, and the youngest is a sister, Maureen. Her father, Rex Walls, is an alcoholic who cannot hold a job and who leaves his family for days at a time when he goes on his benders. Her mother, Rose Mary, fancies herself and artist and doesn't like to work although she occassionally does as a teacher, and leaves her four children to fend themselves thinking that it teaches them independence and life skills which it certainly does in Jeannette's case.

Jeannette not only survives in an atmosphere of deprivation but she thrives. She does get from her family a fierce spirit of independence and competence and a belief that she do anything in life that she desires.

To obtain your free copy, email me with your name and address at

(I still have a copy of last week's free book, Portraits of Recovery.)

This is article #2 in a series on Free books.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Free Cybersafety and Cyberbullying workshop, 04/29/09 at GCC

Genesee Region Teacher Center

Addressing Cybersafety and Cyberbullying

Genesee Community College
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
7 pm- 8:15 pm
T 102
No charge

Presented by Dr James Colt
Co-coordinator of School Safety and Security
Monroe BOCES #1

The audience for this workshop would be GCC students and faculty, pre-k through grade 16 teachers and administrators, law enforcement and interested community members.

Did you know that….

- In kindergarten and 1st grade, 48% interact on websites
- In 2nd- 3rd grades, 38% report being exposed to material that made them uncomfortable
- In 4th-6th grades, a lot of social networking goes on and they post personal and potentially exploited material about themselves online
- In 7th-9th grades, 42% have spoken to an on-line stranger, 39% have posted a photo of themselves, 14% reported that they had communicated about sexual things, 8% have been asked for nude photos of themselves and have been exposed to nude photos.
- In 10th-12th grades, 48% have chatted with strangers, 14% have accepted invitations to meet strangers, 21% have admitted using the computer to cheat on school assignments, 16% have experienced cyberbullying

This information is from a survey given to 40,000 local k-12 grade students in the Rochester area in 2007. Questions were developed by Dr Sam McQuade, author of several books on this topic.

If you have questions, please call the Teacher Center at 591-0400 x2103

Position open for Genesee County Drug Free Community Coalition coordinator




Full time. 35 hours per week. BA Degree preferred in Social Work, Communications, Marketing. Must be addiction free, including tobacco. Pre-employment/post offer drug screening required. This is a grant funded position.

Established community coalition in need of an individual to work with multiple stakeholders regarding substance abuse issues. The person should be knowledgeable of environmental strategies, be self-organized, have excellent communication skills and be able to lead a community coalition. BA Degree preferred in Social Work, Communications, Marketing.

VACANCY AT: GCASA’s Drug Free Communities Program, Genesee Prevention offices

Maryann Bowman, Director of Prevention
Genesee/Orleans Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse, Inc.
430 E. Main Street
Batavia, New York 14020
Phone: 585-815-1877
Fax: 585-343-9620


Genesee/Orleans Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, creed, sexual orientation, age, handicap, or marital status as decreed by Law, and is in compliance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.


Tip Line expands to Erie County with support of Sheriff Howard

The Buffalo News reported on April 7, 2009 that the Tip Line is now operating in Erie County. Here is a snippet from the Buffalo News article:

Monday, Erie County Sheriff Timothy B. Howard announced that an anonymous tip line now is available in the county to report underage drinking.

Anyone aware of incidents as they are happening or being planned can alert authorities by calling (800) 851-1932.

To read the whole article, click here.

The Tip Line was started in Genesee County 3 years ago by a collaborative effort of GCASA and RAP. It has since expanded to Orleans, Wyoming, Monroe and now Erie Counties. It has gained national recognition by CADCA, the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America.

Former New York State Assemblyman, John Sweeney, arrested for second DWI within 2 years

From CNN on April 6, 2009

Former New York Rep. John Sweeney was arrested early Sunday morning on his second DWI incident in 17 months after refusing to take field sobriety tests, the Saratoga County District Attorney's office confirms to CNN.

"We will treat this prosecution like any other felony DWI case," District Attorney James Murphy said in a statement provided to CNN. "We are fortunate that his alleged conduct did not result in death or serious physical injury to himself or any one else."

In 2007, Sweeney pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor DWI charge, Murphy also said in the statement.

Alcoholism is a terrible disease which can be terminal for the person suffering from it and for others who are endangered by the alcoholics behavior. Genesee County's District Attorney's policy is that all DWI offenders obtain a drug and alcohol evaluation and comply with treatment recommendations. This policy helps make our roads and communities safer.

3 suspected crack dealers arrested in Genesee County

The Daily News reported on April 1, 2009 that three suspected crack dealers were arrested in Genesee County.

To read the story click here.

This is article #1 in a series on drug dealers.

Drugs kill - Joseph Mueller, Aquinas senior

Aquinas Senior, Joseph Mueller, 17, was killed on March 28, 2009 in a drunk driving crash in which the driver of the car in which he was riding was driving drunk.

17-year-old Aquinas senior Joseph Mueller from Greece died in a car accident early Saturday morning.Greece Police responded to the report of a crash on Ling Road at around 2 a.m. Officers said when they arrived they found three people that had been in a rollover accident. Police say the car left the roadway, hit a tree, overturned and hit a porch of a home at 94 Ling Road. We are told Mueller who was riding as a passenger, was ejected from the vehicle. He was later pronounced dead at the University of Rochester Medical Center. Police charged the driver, 18-year-old Tia Gerstner of Cherry Road in Rochester with driving while intoxicated and failing to maintain a lane. She suffered minor injuries. A third passenger, 21-year-old William Kent also sustained minor injuries.

For more of this story and video click here.

This is article #18 in a series on Drugs Kill.

Monday, April 6, 2009

LeRoy forum on underage drinking on 04/01/09 attracts over 100 citizens

From the Daily News article on 04/02/09:

Working together was the goal of the forum at Le Roy Village Fitness Wednesday night. More than 100 people attended, filling the gym to hear ideas to curtail underage drinking and substance abuse.

To read the whole article click here.

Sunday, April 5, 2009


Hello, My name is Timothy C Costanzo & I represent only one state of mind in developing this program & thats to serve as a social, political & outspoken victims rights advocate. Along with a re-integration program descibed below to not only cut back on prison population and cost. But to use the costs that we have more productively & for more advanced security measures to protect the public at large from these types of predatory offenders.
But, because I am not involved politically in either of your party platforms or what you supposedly claim to represent I give you this Idea as an alternative to full long term sentencing practices except when dealing & trafficking are involved.
I believe that this program with the help of oasas commissioner Karen M. Carpenter Palumbo
& Governer Pattersons reduction of the rockefeller drug laws working in combiation with each other on the state level, we would not only be able to regain job growth back at a proggressively high rate of speed. Within 2 years of c.r. date or max out date they would be enrolled in the statewide P.O.W.E.R.E.D. ASSURANCE PROGRAM.







Saturday, April 4, 2009

personal quote:

The Soooner you realize that Life isn't fair the Less disappointed you will be.


Hi first let me introduce myself my name is timothy c costanzo and I would like to all the counselors, case managers & of course my counselor shannon.
I would also like to include John Bennett David Markham & the other boss with go-tee!!!
Sorry, forgot name.

Even though I was outrageously difficult at first I Finally saw the rainbow & as it looms it specrtal glare oh so high up in the air, it was if god was saying to me, oh tim, this is the place to be, where you can help your fellow man & also get the help you need.
So, from early 2007 until this very day I've made it through the tough times & now brighter things have come my way. Like being invited to be a author on "GCASA CARES "& to others that might be small but to me its a huge accomplishment there.

Overall, there areonly 3 main types of victimization:
They are as follows;

1.When we Victimize Ourselves.

2.When were Victimized by others.

3.When we are victimized by the govermental systems that are in actuality supposed to protect & service us.

However the worst type of victimization I have ever seen is the faces of helplessness & despair & unfortunately I used to wake up to those 2 faces every single day throught the year.
Filled with uneasy sense of forbodding & ongoing fear.
Ya know some people smoke & have fun getting high as they say, YEE AAH YIPPY I YIPPY A!!!
&They said, you want some this stuff its really wacked?
I say no thats ok I'm already wacked for today!!!

But, ever since the day I was a victim, & I accepted it into my heart where the pain was just too great to bare when it slowly ripped my life apart &took what wasn't there?
So would I havebeen more of a man if I fought harder against their evil plot?
Because of my weakness and my inability to act & defend my soul & body that was justifiably mine from their acts of brutality. Therefore, Everytime I look in the mirror I feel as though I'm a victim of my own weakness for not taking back control & I believe this a faulty error of the human mind for when people experience trauma I know that have states where they think its another place or time.
So don't let this rash of anger get underneath your skin because if you do then it will eat away at you like a disease which cannot be overcome. The only medication for it is forgivness 101.

So, let me ask you this simple question, "HOW MUCH LONGER DO YOU WANT TO BE SOCIETYS VICTIM?" Now before you answer this question please just take the time to ponder it's meaning both to you and those around you?
Then after you've answered that question both honestly & faithfully to yourself In your heart!

Then & only then will you truly know the answer to that one final question in the beginning.


This is for all the victi ms of the world out there like me ?
We've SURVIVED all the pain & lifes brash cruelties.
But now comes the real test, which is to have the faith & commitments
to make yourself whole & isn't that the real test of the mankinds soul?

Use the power from your trauma & the trauma from your pain
to fuel your passions burning for true justice to be done.
Regardless of their excuses, Regardless of their lies,
So, I will give you this one chance to make your future choice,
Despite the years of death & tears which caused us so much pain.

So why don't cha stand up & take back control!
Don't let them chastize you, ridicule you, or even abuse you, or cast an evil smile, & say no, no, no, oh, thats not welcome here.
So, then as I grabbed his bottle in my hand & headed toward the door , one of my freinds put on a blues record called "GET ON OUT"!!!

Therefore use your will your heart willguide you like a uneasy feeling that just nerever goe away. So to all be ready for you never know when the next test could come.
But, know I have in you regardless of what you've done cause Used to be & I to remember it wasn't any fun.

Drug Prevention Rap Song!!!

Trauma victims can never be fully healed from their pain.
The memories of helplessness drive them insane.
So Don't be a victim of society.
Raise your hands, Raise your hands ,
It's time to be free.
So if you truly want recovery,
Then get up here & shake it with me.

See, we don't want your marajuana
makes ya look act & think like a bum.
& then you'll grow up & do bad in school , & believe me kids that ain't cool.

Now I just hope you kids appreciate yourselfs more than that
cause a lady wants a man with style.
Who's got A car nice & clothes to match & a wallet thats really fat!!!

The same holds true for those sell this poison to, See, cocaines a drug that will drive any man insane. But , those that sell it for financial gain are really the ones most at fault to blame. They spread this disease like gas onto a fire causing a exsplosion that cannot be matched.
So, start taking command of all you do, before cocaine makes a slave of you.
So stop!!! Everybody, Look & Listen, I got something to say, which I hold true, I hate drugs, I hate what they do they corrupt the body,the mind & the soul if you believe in that & I'm on a mission Don't you understand to stop all drugs from polluting our town from the filth & corruption that thses drug dealers breed I aim to destroy it for I know its pain.
So remeber that 1 thing called life that we all hold on to.
& thats the freedom to live life as we choose, But remember you only got this 1 shot, so loose it or loose it but thats all you got. So why not use it to rise to the top!!!
the freedom to do with our lifes the way that we want to,

Thursday, April 2, 2009

$10.00 Subway gift certificate for best comment

The best comment left on the GCASA Cares blog between today 04/02/09 and Monday, 04/13/09 will win a $10 gift certificate to Subway. Voting on the best comment will be on 04/14/09. The comment with the most votes as the best will win the gift certificate.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Monthly stats - March 2009

In March, 2009, GCASA Cares had 954 visits by 813 different people.

In February, 2009, GCASA Cares had 640 visits by 467 different people.

In January, 2009, GCASA Cares had 540 visits by 415 different people.

Even though there are more days in the month of March than the month of February there has been a significant increase in the number of visitors to GCASA Cares.

Thank you for visiting and spreading the information about the blog.

Your comments are appreciated and important. Please leave your ideas, questions, concerns, and share your experience.

Are You As Smart As A Substance Abuse Professional? - Concurent alcohol and illicit drug use

Question: What percentage of people who use alcohol also use illicit drugs at the same time?

A: 6%

B: 10 %

C: 17%

D: 42%

This is article #34 in a series on Are You As Smart As A Substance Abuse Professional?

For the correct answer click on comments.


Hello, again & good morning just a brief note from yesterday I wasn't able to finish my whole piece so here it is in the words of my written hand.

I'm, General-Dok -Psykosis M.D.
The world is both ours to take & recieve
This just part of the miracle of life that I believe.
So, my freinds I invite you on a journey for all
the world to see. Which is, a world, which could
eventually be, A paradise of hope.
Which could set our people free!!!

We could free them from their abusers.
We could free them from their pain.
We could free them from a world thats
gone partially insane.

So, if you want to witness to others,
about what its like to finally be free from the
ongoing pain.
Then come & join us & volunteer
We have no liquor but we have pain
we just restructure it to a more benficial gain.

Always remember, Alone we are weak
but together we are strong. for we are
sculptors of our lives made from the worlds clay.
Will you make a future free from all the sin or would
you rather take your chances & fall into the pit again.

This battle will last forever between drugs & the
Human mind, But the war will be won by those who
take benefit from time.

So unleash all your passions & make your dreams
come true because if I could do it you can do it.

& with that I say, adew;