Why public health responses have racial preferences

New faculty and doctoral student portraits for the George Warren Brown School of Social Work Wednesday, Sept. 26, 2012 at Washington University in St. Louis. (Photo © Whitney Curtis)

One of the reasons I became an addiction counselor and obtained advanced degrees in social work was my awareness that people in power neither resembled nor came from those communities most in need.

In 1990, after I completed a 30-day addiction treatment program in Louisville, Kentucky, I decided that rather than returning to my job as a garbage man, I would enroll in the local community college and get an education. The only way I could pull that off was to enter the VOA – the Volunteers of America – and that meant living in a group home for over two years.

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