Awards given for mental health efforts PDF Print E-mail
Written by Sentinel-Tribune Staff   
Monday, 05 November 2012 11:28
North Baltimore officer Allan Baer shakes hands with Tom Clemons, executive director of the Wood County Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services, after receiving an award from the organization. (Photo: Enoch Wu/Sentinel-Tribune)
The Wood County Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board honored three individuals and one social service agency at its annual meeting at Penta Career Center.
Board President Judy Ennis said “the board believes strongly that in order for our consumers to achieve their individual goals we as a board must always strive for collaboration and reduction of stigma. The recipients of our annual awards exemplify these two categories.”
She and ADAMHS Executive Director Tom Clemons honored North Baltimore Police Chief Allan Baer, Sentinel-Tribune County Editor Jan Larson McLaughlin, State Sen. Mark Wagoner and The Cocoon Shelter.
In recognizing Baer, Clemons said that “cross-systems collaboration is essential for community safety and mental health. We need leaders who take the time to thoroughly investigate potentially harmful situations and who know how to work quickly with other systems to achieve positive change in a small local community and to see its impact expand across a larger region.” 
Baer “investigated allegations of heroin use and then worked with other law enforcement agencies and the ESC’s Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug prevention onsite specialists to help apprehend a pusher and cease his operations in several school districts. Continuing to work together with others, he reported to the ADAMHS Board Program Committee about the problem of heroin use in Wood County. He hosted a town meeting to alert the people of North Baltimore of the risks and what has been done and what needs to be done. He also has worked with county substance abuse treatment providers to refer those in need for services.”
Baer “has demonstrated collaborative leadership through his continuing work to promote better cooperation between law enforcement and the Wood County ADAMHS system to facilitate communication, problem-solving and quality improvement for the safety and benefit of the entire county.”
The Cocoon Shelter was honored “the leadership shown in collaboration across many systems for the benefit of Wood County residents.”
In Wood County, Clemons said, “we are very fortunate to have an agency that provides the safety, education, support and linkage to needed services and justice that have saved lives and have help victims to avoid the lifetime of negative consequences. We wish to recognize their essential role in saving lives and preventing many long-term effects of trauma.”
Clemons also applauded the shelter for “the last several years surpassing 3500 nights to over 70 victims and their children.”
McLaughlin was recognized for her work in reducing “the stigma that so often confronts individuals with mental illness.”
Ennis said “the media can be a powerful force in shaping how we think about issues and individuals. In Wood County we are blessed to have a reporter whose reporting is always accurate, without bias but also contains that rare spirit of compassion and dignity for all concerned.
“Her deep and caring concern for all citizens is shown in her many awards and activities outside of her professional life as a journalist” including recognition received from the Suicide Prevention coalition and the Wood Lane Human Rights Committee. She also has been active in the Court Appointed Special Advocates program.
In honoring Wagoner, Ennis said that “this board has had many positive interactions with Senator Wagoner and he has always stood with us in supporting our beliefs that treatment works and people recover.”
She said he has taken “a particular interest in helping Ohioans struggling with dual diagnosis.”
As chair of Senate Judiciary Committee, “he has guarded against the criminalization of mental illness” and, Ennis added, that “he was supportive of recovery concepts in Ohio’s Sentencing Reform/Justice Reinvestment Legislation.”
Last Updated on Monday, 05 November 2012 11:30

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