STATEMENT FROM THE FOUNDER AND CEO
JUNE 3, 2020
POTOMAC, MD -- Second Chance Addiction Care was established out of a recognition that too many of our friends and neighbors were struggling with substance abuse. Our essential mission is to help these individuals chart a new path for themselves, a path of happiness and health.
While the focus of our program is individuals and families in need, it is clear that our community and our country are not well, either. First, COVID-19 has shattered the critical support systems that help those in recovery withstand the compulsion to drink or use. Recent data from the federal government has confirmed what we heard anecdotally: that fatal and non-fatal overdoses have spiked during the pandemic. In response to this public health crisis, Second Chance has taken a number of steps to enhance access to treatment, including creating the option for patients to receive care via telehealth and offering free family support again via telehealth. Second Chance also is working diligently on a new online platform, to be launched this fall, designed to reach even more individuals who wish to break free from addiction; we seek to maximize accessibility without sacrificing effectiveness.
Second, the deaths of George Floyd and others have highlighted the fact that the nation still has fallen short of the ideals of freedom and equality that lie at the heart of this grand experiment in democratic self-governance. Lawyer and Just Mercy author Bryan Stevenson has suggested that "[w]e can change the culture of institutions in this country," citing drunk driving as a example of a recent cultural shift. Drunk driving was once "tolerated," but Stevenson noted that Mothers Against Drunk Driving "began lifting up new narratives" and in doing so "created a new culture" on drunk driving.
The 2015 Task Force on 21st Century Policing proposed that greater mental health support be provided to individuals who have experienced trauma, as untreated trauma can enhance the likelihood of criminal behavior down the line. The Task Force similarly pointed out the need for greater mental health support for law enforcement, who also experience high-degrees of trauma. According to the Task Force's report, "The officers who protect us must also be protected—against incapacitating physical, mental, and emotional health problems[.]"
Second Chance has pledged, from Day 1, to treat any law enforcement officer for free, if they have no means of payment. As a program, we will redouble our efforts to address trauma and to help law enforcement officers as well as first responders and veterans in need. As an institution, we will push for policies, programs, and resources that enhance access to effective and ethical treatment. And as individuals, we will exercise the virtues of civility and service that can make us better people, and that can also make the nation more just and equitable.
Should you have any questions or concerns about this commitment, please feel free to contact me.
Yours in Service,
Dawinder S. Sidhu
Founder & CEO; Chair, Board of Advisors
Second Chance Addiction Care
June 3, 2020