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Monday, May 2, 2011

Great News: Attorney Alcohol and Drug Abuse Problems to Increase

Budget Slices Support for Lawyers Facing Drug, Alcohol Abuse
The New York Law Journal by Joel Stashenko  -  May 2, 2011

ALBANY, NY - The court system has eliminated all funding for a program that helps lawyers cope with alcohol and drug abuse problems. According to its website, the New York State Lawyer Assistance Trust was established in 2001 by Chief Judge Judith Kaye and Chief Administrative Judge Jonathan Lippman as "a permanent entity that brings statewide resources and awareness to the prevention and treatment of alcohol and substance abuse among lawyers, judges and law students." The courts have appropriated money for the trust in every year since, for a total of $1.3 million. Its grants are funneled through the New York City Bar and other local bar groups. But the program has come to seem less "permanent" with the court system facing substantial budget cuts. Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the state Legislature have ordered the Judiciary to reduce the 2011-12 budget by $170 million, $70 million more than the Judiciary had proposed. Court administrators have cut or suspended a whole range of programs from children's centers in the courts to judicial hearing officers. And they are preparing to announce another round of layoffs on May 18. The trust's website now includes the following notice: "As of May 2011, the NYLAT Grant Program has been suspended, as no funding has been made available in the state budgeting process. Check back on this site in April 2012 to learn whether the program has been re-activated." Patricia Spataro of the New York State Bar Association, a member of the trust, said in an interview on Friday that her group and others hope to make up the state funding to continue to provide the services. The Office of Court Administration had no comment on the elimination of the program. Ms. Spataro said the state bar will continue to run a confidential toll-free line for lawyers in distress at 1-800-244-0569. Impetus for establishment of the trust came from a task force appointed by Judge Kaye in 1999, which officials called the first systematic effort by the court system to gauge the extent of the problem within the legal profession. That group, which was chaired by former Court of Appeals Judge Joseph W. Bellacosa, cited a study showing that 18 percent to 25 percent of the lawyers studied were dependent on alcohol. Various studies, including one by the state bar, have shown that lawyers are among the professionals with the highest risk of developing dependence on alcohol or drugs due to work-life pressures (NYLJ, April 9, 2009). Supreme Court Justice Vincent J. Reilly Jr. of Schenectady County, the current chair of the trust, did not return a call for comment.  Joel Stashenko can be contacted at


Anonymous said...

Law can turn you in to an alcoholic and a drug addict???? you got to be f***ing kidding me, these demons sold their soul, now they can't cope.

I wonder how the judges, attorneys and the rest of the judicial whores and county prostitutes deal with using the family court to sell children for porn, prostitution, and familial pedophilia?

Maybe we should ask Judge John K. McGuirk from the Orange County Supreme Court in Goshen New York. How he deals with forgetting that because of selling himself as a cheap street whore children are been raped, sodomized, and destroyed.


Hell's Journal said...

Simple solution to needing drugs and alcohol for attorneys is don't sell your soul to the devil. And if you do sell your soul, enjoy the bottle now and save your sad tale to tell the other NY lawyers sharing Justice at your final "courthouse" in Hell.

Anonymous said...

Let me just state that this story is a great surprise to me as I saw the juducial bench drink and drive during this time and some quite did anyone tell them that they could seek special help from OCA..who by the way sees addiction as a reason to fire employees, not assist them as it is a disease.....even while the NY Bench continues to drink and drive and some wanting drugs.. as Loritabs is that choice?

I have a friend and ex-employee of OCA who made 2 attempts to get and stay clean by entering rehabs..30 days and 90 days and was doing well with my guidance...until OCA decided that this disease was an easy route and reason to fire him..and they did so..mainly to get at me for my expose of their discriminations.
Whenever this person came back to work, OCA suprvisors.. and sadly one who "claimed" she was my best friend for 30 years..put their abusive behavior to this man's healing mind and work ability..until they could force him back to substance abuse and use CSEA the bigggest fraud union in the facilitate their agenda.

Let me just say that I know OCA intends to bring this scenario up very soon...but before they do, they better be armed with information about all their drug and alcohol addicts that worked...and continue to work for them...and how many of them have ever attempted in 30 yrs to correct their addictions by entering this man did proactively.
What OCA might find interesting for discussion when they bring up this event, is their now ex- top Administrative Judge and Chief Clerk..just 2 examples, both who worked for years smashed daily and driving home crocked. One I obserevd personally crashing into a snow bank AND THEN GRABBING MY ASS, at the trial lawyers dinner at 5;30 PM.... smelling like the old upside down liquor store.
These administrators'behavior had the knowledge of every other OCA employee and adminstrator, in full knowledge that they were committing the crime of DWI 365 days x 25 yrs...and never were any of these 2 forced to enter rehab or detox!

Bring back this program in 2012...for what reason... since OCA views addiction as a reason to destroy jobs rather than address the reasons people everywhere are becoming in need of a substance to function at work.
OCA MUST take a lot of the blame for forcing that behavior on their employees with their abusive, discriminatory and criminal actions.... daily.

Anonymous said...

With all the money they make they can pay for thier own substance abuse why should taxpayers pay for any of it.
They have health insurance let them pay for it themselves.
Also being that they know thier iws a problem they should do random testing.

Anonymous said...

Let them eat cake.....screw them all that's what they do to us

Pina said...

Let them all choke on all the Alchol, pills, they want, make sure they spit out my dead relatives money, whole they stole from them in 10 minutes while my relatives worked a life time.
How about get their trust out when they are heaving, and put it in your name. Like you did to me Nassau County Thieves on all ABA commitees Thats so hypocritical

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