Provide secular alternatives to 12-step treatment, or else! That’s the message of the Hazle v. Crofoot decision issued this fall by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. My analysis of the case appears this month in Counselor Connection, the online newsletter of Counselor Magazine. This goes out to addiction counselors nationwide, but whether many of them will pay attention remains to be seen. The California prison system and its allied treatment vendors changed absolutely nothing after same court’s decision in the Inouye v. Kemna case six years ago, which also mandated secular treatment alternatives. But this time, in Hazle v. Crofoot, the high court put some teeth (read, dollar damages and injunctions) into its decision. Read the article for details.
P.S. The mag ran my article pretty much exactly as written. But there’s a dropped comma near the end that tends to change the meaning. The newsletter says:
“What the court is saying is that other non-religious treatment options also need to be made available. Or else.”
What I wrote was:
“What the court is saying is that other, [comma!] non-religious treatment options also need to be made available. Or else.”
Without the comma it looks like I’m calling 12-step programs non-religious, which runs counter to the whole sense of the article and the court decisions on which it’s based.