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Jordan, City Launch Black Church Project

November 06, 2020

A new substance abuse treatment program created by Ayana Jordan, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry will help people of color who don’t feel comfortable accessing traditional settings for addiction treatment.

The Black Church Project will offer participants the option to receive their treatment at the Dixwell United Congregational Church in New Haven, a non-traditional treatment setting that Jordan and supporters hope will encourage people to stay in treatment.

The program is funded with a $3 million grant from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, a program of the National Institutes of Health.

At a news conference November 5, Jordan, New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker; the Rev. Jerry Streets, pastor of Dixwell UCC; and other government and church officials unveiled the community-based program, which will initially recruit 200 participants. People will use laptops and other technology to participate in a form of treatment called cognitive behavior therapy.

Jordan told people gathered for the news conference that she envisions success for the program because it “brings the care to folks instead of expecting folks who are already marginalized and face racism to find it.”

According to New Haven officials, the Black community uses alcohol and other drugs at lower or at equal rates to the White community, but the Black community has more severe health problems related to their substance use like higher rates of HIV, Hepatitis C, and other diseases and are more likely to be put in jail due to their use.

Read press coverage and learn more about the Black Church Project:

New Haven Independent

New Haven Register

Yale Daily News

Submitted by Christopher Gardner on November 06, 2020