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You didn’t really think this was all going to blow over now, did you?

The SunSentinel is reporting that Delray Beach Vice Mayor Tom Carney has rallied up a team of lobbyist to pass legislation that would regulate sober houses and recovery living facilities in single-family neighborhoods.

“We want to make sure that those who are profiting from the recovery business are at least delivering on their promise,” Carney said.

I’m usually on the fence about issues like these because although they say that their intentions are not to discriminating against people in recovery, it can easily come off that way. This is not to place the blame on city officials but as a town, we are not being supportive of the recovery Industry. The signs that are up all around town label sober houses as “transient” housing which is meant to instill fear into local residents. Then there’s the lawsuit with the Caron Foundation which was eventually settled but where “a federal judge granted an injunction against the city, saying the Caron Foundation has a good chance of showing that the city may have “unlawfully discriminated” against people in recovery when it modified its transient housing laws in February.” Not to mention the sentiments of the general population of Delray who look down upon people in recovery and stereotype them as “addicts”. As if being an addict means that you’re automatically less than or a second class citizen.

I understand that there should and needs to be regulation of all Halfway and Sober Living facilities but it shouldn’t happen the way it did in the Caron Foundation case. Instill the policies the correct way and show support for the Industry as a whole.

According to the SunSentinel, “one of the pieces of legislation Carney plans on working on with lobbyists would provide a definition of sober house and a transitional living home and would require that the Department of Children and Families license them. The bill also would require sober houses to provide proof that they are located more than 1,000 feet from other sober houses as well as from all other residential components of substance abuse services at the time of application”.

This I am for, blatant discrimination – no. I’m looking forward to seeing where this will go and how it’s going to impact the current Industry and the future of Delray Beach’s recovery community.

Read the full SunSentinel article here.

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