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weekly update – january 24, 2019

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In this week’s update…

Katal Leads Albany Effort to Implement Evidence-Based Treatment in Correctional Facility

Join Our Statewide Criminal Justice Reform Calls

Katal Leads Albany Effort to Implement Evidence-Based Treatment in Correctional Facility

Katal’s Director of Health and Harm Reduction, Keith Brown, speaks to Jackson Wang of Spectrum News Albany.

We’re excited to share this major news about our work in Albany County. Last week, Katal joined with a coalition of public safety, public health, and community groups working with the Albany County Sheriff’s office to announce a multi-phase implementation of a robust Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) program to operate within Albany County Jail. The new program is expected to save lives and connect people detained in the jail with evidence-based treatment and care.

Why is this important? Evidence-based treatment options are few and far between in correctional settings. In fact, outside of Rikers, Albany County Jail is now the only other correctional facility in New York to offer the full range of Medication Assisted Treatment options to people detained at the jail who are battling opioid addiction. This victory is the result of years of organizing by Katal and our partners.

Sheriff Craig Apple speaking alongside community partners at the Albany Count Jail MAT Expansion Press Conference, Friday, January 18.

Katal members, Bill and Susan said, “As people who have experienced both addiction and involvement in the criminal justice system, we firmly believe this will make a big difference. Giving people treatment while inside, and also setting them up with services outside can really help people like us handle the legal, housing, health, and other issues they face as a result of their addiction. While nobody should have to make it to jail to get treatment, things like this can offer people another way into recovery.”

As we fight to end the war on drugs and mass incarceration, we must ensure that those who are detained have full access to evidence-based and humane addiction treatment.

Read the full press release here.

Read the article by Bethany Bump for the Times Union here.

Read the article by Jackson Wang for Spectrum News Albany here.

For more information on how to get involved in our Health and Harm Reduction work in New York, contact Keith Brown at 518.527.6263 or; and in Connecticut, contact Kenyatta Thompson at (860) 937-6094, or

Join Our Statewide Criminal Justice Reform Calls

Monthly, the Katal team holds Statewide Criminal Justice Reform Calls in which participants share updates and information related to criminal justice issues in New York and Connecticut.

The goals of these calls are to: share and highlight issues, campaigns, and projects that groups are working on to advance statewide reform; identify ways to align, coordinate, and support each other in the work to end mass incarceration; strengthen organizing and advocacy across issues and build movement in New York and Connecticut.

Register to join the next New York Statewide Call, Thursday, February 14, 2019 from Noon-1pm here.

Register to join the next Connecticut Statewide Call, Thursday, January 31, 2019 from 11am-Noon here.

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