Conference Focuses on Mental Illness and Addiction

Organized by Mayor Sam Sullivan and the city of Vancouver, Collaboration for Change’ is bringing together a number of experts from different fields, including academics, city officials, health managers and health workers to discuss solutions to dual diagnosis individuals, addicts who have also been diagnosed with a mental illness.

Despite being among the most progressive cities in the world when it comes to dealing with drugs and addiction, the city does not have an agency or program that specifically deals with dual diagnosis individuals, a group that many believe constitutes a substantial number of the city’s homeless people.

Typically, these people run into a catch-22: many addiction programs are disinclined to accept addicts who also suffer from mental illness, while therapists and mental health counselors often advise them that until they are drug-free, they can’t receive counseling.

Source: The Vancouver Sun
Date: May 1, 2008

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