Here are a couple of stories about statistics related to alcohol abuse and college students as you consider presenting SCRAM to your local colleges and universities.
Read more research here.
Read more headlines here.
38th Annual Summer Clinical Institute in Addiction Studies - The University of California, San Diego, Center for Criminality & Addiction Research, Training & Application (CCARTA) kicks off its Summer Clinical Institute with international and national research scientists and clinical experts, August 4-6, 2009.
Read more here.
Read the May/June 2009 issue. Designated for 1.0 CEUs.
What Colleges Need to Know Now: An Update on College Drinking Research
Facebook Pics Earn College Student Alcohol Monitor, on Chicagoist
An underage girl who was involved in a drunk driving accident is back in hot water thanks to a picture on her Facebook page. Erika Scoliere, 20, of Campton Hills, was involved in a July 2007 accident that left motorcyclist Frank Ferraro dead; she later pleaded not guilty to charges of aggravated drunken driving and reckless homicide. While she awaited trial, a judge allowed her to continue attending college at the University of Dayton in Ohio. Since then, she’s been in trouble before, violating her bond when she failed to contact authorities on a regular basis which resulted in more frequent check-ins. But now she’s been ordered to wear an alcohol monitor.
According to the Kane County Chronicle:
Circuit Judge Thomas Mueller ordered Wednesday that Scoliere now must wear the SCRAM bracelet after violating conditions of her bond. The SCRAM – which stands for Secure Continuous Alcohol Monitor – bracelet notifies authorities if it depicts alcohol consumption through perspiration. The bracelet takes a reading every hour…
Assistant State’s Attorney Steve Sims asked for the bracelet after police found photographs on the popular social networking Web site, Facebook.com. In court Wednesday, Mueller said the photos showed tequila and Scoliere “having a grand old time with her friends.”
One photo’s caption read, “Ten minutes later, Erika passed out in my bed. Ha. Ha. Ha.,” Mueller said.
Meanwhile, there’s still action going on in the case against her stemming from the accident. Witnesses said that Scoliere didn’t appear drunk at the time and she was not initially charged with drunk driving, but a later toxicology test showed that she had been drinking. Her attorneys, however, are now trying to have blood test evidence thrown out after it was revealed that it was accidentally destroyed shortly after the testing. [via WBBM]
Joseph E. Birkett
505 N. County Farm Rd
Wheaton, IL 60187
In regards to AAM alcohol monitoring bracelet
Dear Mr. Birkett. My name is John xxxxxx D.O.B. xx/xx/1971. I am writing this letter to you about how the Scram monitor has affected my life.
I was arrested for aggravated D.U.I. & driving while revoked May 1st of 2008. I am what you would refer to a chronic alcoholic.
Eight years ago I was president of xxxxx Inc. An engineering firm started by my father 35 years ago. I had four children a wife and a Job making 160,000 a year. Then I was diagnosed with congestive heart failure. I had just witnessed my Father a year previously at that time die a horrible death from the same disease I was diagnosed with. Back then I was a weekend drinker, but soon it started to become a daily habit. Every morning I would have to have a shot or two to stop the shakes before I went to work. My alcoholism rapidly progressed and soon I stopped eating and just drank all day hoping no one would notice. At home there became domestic problems. My mother came into town one day and saw my condition and told me I was fired until I stayed sober for a year. I told her I would start my own company and take all her accounts. She said “ I would rather lose my company than lose my son”.
When my wife found out I lost my job she filed for divorce and started sleeping with my best friend. I was devastated and ended up on the streets, homeless and eating out of a dumpster behind the KFC in Harvey living in an abandoned building. One day I overdosed and was found passed out on the street. The paramedics took me to Ingalls Hospital. After being released I ended up at xxxxxx Park mental hospital. There I was introduced to AA. I was so sick I was transferred to a state run nursing home.
You could only Imagine in your worst nightmare that place was. Mentally ill patients were mixed with elderly sick patients and on two occasions I witnessed two elderly women raped by a young mentally ill patient. I complained to the nurses what was going on and they said no authority would believe a mentally and physically ill patient. They threatened me to be sent someplace worse if I didn’t keep my mouth shut.
Meanwhile my ex moved her boyfriend in and he started smoking crack cocaine and stealing my kid’s things. My son told me he was being abused so I escaped the nursing home in the middle of the night.
My uncle got me a small place to live in Blue Island. And my son moved in with me. My Ex’s boyfriend was sent to prison ( name xxxx xxxxx) for stealing my children’s things.
I started going to AA meetings every day. But I was relapsing every few weeks. Things settled down at my Ex’s so my son returned home. My drinking increased back to daily drinking after he left and I overdosed at least another three times. I kept going back to AA but every time a problem arose I did not have the coping skills to stay sober. The Dr’s told me I needed a heart transplant but would not give me one until I had a year sober.
One day I met woman at the hospital and began dating her. We soon fell in love but my drinking continued. Things got so bad I started begging for change at the bus stops just to get enough money to buy a forty ounce to stop the withdrawals.
My girlfriend had the idea if I moved in with her in Dupage County my drinking would stop. I still drank until one night my defibrillator went off 12 times in one hour. I ended up in CDH for a month. Men from AA would come see me every day. I started reading AA books. I almost died after surgery at CDH. They made a mistake during surgery and I was bleeding so bad internally I was given last rights by a priest while receiving multiple blood transfusions. Luckily and now I believe by God I survived.
I was released from CDH and started going back to AA again. I managed to stay sober for about four months. Again something tragic in my life started happening, my fiancée developed severe Bi-polar disease. Again I did not have enough coping skills to deal with it and went on a four month drinking spree. I never got into any trouble legally before while living in Blue Island because I did not have access to a car. But in March of 08 I got a D.U.I. in xxxx County. They just gave me a ticket and sent me on my way. Again in May of 08 I was pulled over out here in Dupage for aggravated D.U.I. and driving while revoked. This time they did not let me go. I spent 52 days in jail I detoxed in isolation for 12 days I was having DT”s and my heart was going into A-fib I threw two blood clots while in jail. Luckily and again because of God, Judge Bakalis DuPage County lowered my bond after seeing how sick I was but on condition that I wear the SCRAM bracelet.
I immediately went to my cardiologist and they hooked my defibrillator up to the computer and they said it recorded 16 life threatening arrhythmias while in jail. I was very angry when I was released; I now have to take blood thinners for the rest of my life.
I immediately went back to AA and this time got a sponsor who told me to go to at least one meeting a day and he also started working the 12 steps with me. My thinking was very irrational for the first six months of my sobriety. I AM POSITIVE I WOULD HAVE RELAPSED AGAIN WITHOUT THE SCRAM MONITOR. During those first six months my fiancée’s Bi-Polar caused me a lot of resentment. On one occasion she had an episode and left me at a gas station two hours away. It was pouring rain and I had to take taxi home. I was so resentful I called my SCRAM case worker Suzanne and started crying telling her I think I’m going to drink. Thankfully she took the time to talk to me and reminded me the consequences if I did drink. I immediately went to a meeting. At Christmas time my mother called me. I thought it strange because she never calls me. She told me she has stage 4 lung cancer and is dying, again WITHOUT THE MONITOR I MIGHT OF RELAPSED.
I think during those first six to eight months I called my SCRAM caseworker, Suzanne about ten times and she always took the time to talk with me.
After I was sober six months my ex wife called me and said both my boys were not going to school and were drinking and smoking pot. I went to pick-up my daughters from the train station but both boys were there with all of their bags. She sent a notarized letter giving me custody of them.
I was so happy to have my boys back in my life. Justin my oldest and Jon my 15 year old. I took them to xxxxxxxxx East High School and got both of them advanced a grade promising the dean I would work extra hard with them. A few months ago I found a small zip lock dope bag in my living room. My boys insisted it was someone else’s. I called the school and asked them to drug test them. Mrs. Xxxxxx their councilor told me they couldn’t do that but would search their lockers. I bought a home drug test and had Justin pee in it. It came out clean. Jon refused to take it saying I’m violating his civil rights. I told him don’t worry if you’re getting high your eventually going to get caught.
A couple months ago Justin was being yelled at by my Fiancée for coming home after curfew. Jon came storming out of his room and told Ami to go to her room and shut up you’re not our mother. I was sitting on the couch with my oxygen on and told him he’s going to have to go back to his mothers. Jon is 6ft 1 and 245lbs. He came at me swinging and I tackled him down holding him there but I lost my oxygen and passed out. Jon kicked me in my face and while I was in the hospital he took off on the train to his mothers. The police arrested the wrong son. Again WITHOUT THE SCRAM MONITOR I DON’T KNOW IF I WOULD HAVE STAYED SOBER. Later Justin brought out all the dope bags out of Jon’s room and said he was getting high on PCP the entire time he was here. I asked Justin why he didn’t tell us and he said he’s not a rat. His mother sent him to treatment.
Again I called my sponsor and he said I never should have taken on such a large responsibility with six months sober. After Jon left Justin cut off all long hair and really started doing better in school. At the same time I finished my 9th Step in AA. That’s the step where you make a list of all people you harmed while drinking and then go to each of them and make amends. After completing that step I have never had the desire to drink again God has removed from me the desire and compulsion to drink.
I have now completed all of AA’s twelve steps. Life is not perfect but I now have the coping skills to deal with life one day at a time. My heart output has also increases 15%. My cardiologist said he’s only seen that kind of improvement in only two other such cases. I also now Have over a year sober and sponsor someone now myself. I talk to my mother every day and I have been offered my job back when my lungs improve. I start pulmonary rehab next month. My daughters call me twice a week Elizabeth’s 12 and Taylor is 8. They are going to stay the summer with us. That would never have happened if I didn’t stay sober.
The entire point of this letter is that Chronic relapsing alcohols can recover with the extra help of Alternative Alcohol Monitoring (AAM, LLC). One day this bracelet is going to be removed but I now rely on God and my friends in AA and I am confident that if I keep working the steps and working with other alcoholics I don’t have to be afraid of the bracelet being gone. Also I think it should be a felony if you relapse with the bracelet on. There has to be serious consequences involved. I read the paper everyday and read how someone is killed by a drunk driver. Also the bracelet is worthless without other means of counseling. The bracelet buys you the time you need to hopefully receive the therapy an alcoholic needs. Maybe one day science will come up with a solution to cure addiction but until that day arrives I think the SCRAM device is the best alternative to locking someone up. I don’t have a lot of income because of my health but if I can come up with the money to drink I can come up with the money for Scrams services. Plus it puts you in a position where you’re helping the system not taking from it. If I can come up with the SCRAM fees a month, anyone can.
John G xxxxxx
My sponsor is DR. Michael xxxxxxxx