AHA News |  

Secular Recovery Programs to Be Approved by Massachusetts Medical Officials

For Immediate Release

Contact: William Burgess, bburgess@americanhumanist.org, 202-238-9088 x 102

(Washington, DC, June 10, 2013) — Massachusetts state medical authorities have responded positively to a request to make available secular alternatives to religious 12-step programs, such as Alcoholics Anonymous, for those facing disciplinary action. The change was requested by attorneys with the American Humanist Association’s Appignani Humanist Legal Center in response to a complaint from a local doctor being scrutinized by the State Board of Registration in Medicine (BRM). 

The BRM contracts with the Physician Health Services, Inc. (PHS) to develop treatment plans for its doctors with substance abuse problems. Up until now, the PHS has not made it explicitly clear to doctors they can attend secular alternatives to faith-based programs.

While BRM and PHS officials have agreed that treatment options should not be limited to sectarian-based groups like Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous, attorneys with the American Humanist Association’s legal center continue to work with them on official wording to ensure it’s clear that secular options such as SMART Recovery and Rational Recovery are also acceptable.

“Compliance with the Constitution requires that participation in religious programs can’t be dictated or coerced,” said Monica Miller, an attorney and legal consultant with the Appignani Humanist Legal Center. “The willingness state medical officials have shown in resolving this problem is reassuring.”

Details can be found here.

###

The American Humanist Association (www.americanhumanist.org) advocates for the rights and viewpoints of humanists. Founded in 1941 and headquartered in Washington D.C., its work is extended through more than 160 local chapters and affiliates across the United States. Special thanks to the Louis J. Appignani Foundation and The Herb Block Foundation for their support of the Appignani Humanist Legal Center.

Humanism is a progressive philosophy of life that, without theism, affirms a responsibility to lead ethical lives of value to self and humanity.

American Humanist Association

Carroll County: A Small Maryland Community Gets Big Attention for All the Wrong...

2 days ago

American Humanist Association

Matthew Bulger, the AHA's legislative associate, reports on our first congressio...

3 days ago

American Humanist Association

We're happy to welcome a new chapter, Washington DC, Atheists, Humanists and Agn...

3 days ago

American Humanist Association

Check out some photos from yesterday's congressional briefing on humanist celebr...

3 days ago

American Humanist Association

Our first congressional briefing was a success! The room was completely packed w...

4 days ago

American Humanist Association

Wonder Works Day Camp in Moscow, Idaho has begun! The first day was a huge succe...

4 days ago

American Humanist Association

The briefing on military chaplaincy has begun.

4 days ago

American Humanist Association

Today, the American Humanist Association will be hosting our first Congressional...

4 days ago

American Humanist Association

Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!

4 days ago

American Humanist Association

Here is a video from Harvard's Making Caring Common Project. 5 Ways to Raise M...

5 days ago

American Humanist Association

Why the Way We Live is More Important. Get TheHumanist.com by email once a week...

5 days ago

American Humanist Association

Hey, have a laugh! http://hmn.st/1sFRZ33 Get TheHumanist.com by email once a we...

5 days ago

American Humanist Association

No matter how right or how wrong, religion can not establish morality for the ma...

5 days ago

American Humanist Association

I have come across this many times. While this topic may not be important to all...

5 days ago

American Humanist Association

Jesus Cones! A new way to violate church-state separation, in Gwinnett County, G...

7 days ago

American Humanist Association

Well this is rad! AHA Board Member Herb Silverman is featured in this short (10...

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

It may seem silly, maybe even a blatant mockery, but if you really think about i...

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

Happy Birthday Nelson Mandela!

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

A Blessing in Disguise for Atheists? Check out AHA Legal Director David Niose's...

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

This is a very interesting interactive chart explaining bible contradictions, sh...

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

Have you seen the new FYI Network show Married At First Sight? Tell us what you...

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

The Vaccination Exception; God doesn't want me to receive vaccines... Luis Gran...

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

With Corporations becoming "people", they will obviously be exploring religion.....

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

An Invocation for Everyone: What the Secular Invocation in Greece, N.Y., Means f...

10 days ago