On February 25-26, 2021, NAADAC hosted the successful Engagement in the Black Community Summit. The summit, which was organized by NAADAC’s Critical Issues in the Black Community Committee (CIBCC), highlighted critical issues within the Black community as they relate to addiction treatment, recovery, and healing. Over 1,300 people attended the virtual event, and attendees all joined together to foster a greater sense of diversity, open-mindedness, and inclusion within the addiction community.
This two-day summit, which took place during Black History Month, provided a voice and platform for the Black community. Members of the CIBCC not only helped plan, but also facilitated sessions and served on discussion panels. NAADAC commends the committee for their outstanding work in organizing this impactful summit.
The summit’s featured speakers included Grady Anthony Austin, Raven Freeborn (née Dickerson) LCSW, CNP, Angele Moss-Baker, LPC, LMFT, MAC, EAS-C, DCMHS-COD, and O.T. Porter, PhD, LCDC. These renowned speakers brought their insights and experiences to life with their presentations, and worked alongside panelists from the CIBCC, including Bakahia Madison, PsyD, LCPC, CADC, Karla L. Sapp, EdD, LPC, LMHS-S, MAC, Helena Washington, MEd, LCDC, ICADC, MAC, Shevel Mavins, MS, Peter Mott, MA, LCDC, ICPS, Katina Palmer, MA, LPC, Carmela Drake, PhD, LPC, NCC, CAADP, ACGC-III, Joe Powell, LCDC, and Thurston S. Smith, MPA, LAC, CCS. Bakahia Madison, PsyD, LCPC, CADC, and Katina Palmer, MA, LPC, are the celebrated co-chairs of the committee.
Key topics of discussion from the Thursday presentations included equity solutions for the Black community, advocacy and policy reform, and addiction in Black LGBTQ+ identifying individuals. Attendees also engaged in open discussions that focused on equity and how treatment providers can help eliminate stigma through policy reform and advocacy.
On Friday, presenters focused their topics on music as treatment, critical issues within the Black community, and the journey of the Black helping professional. Discussions included understanding African American culture and culturally relevant music, as well as how Black helping professionals can provide support to their clients while also advancing in their own careers.
NAADAC thanks all who organized, attended, and presented in this powerful event and looks forward to more like it in the future.