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Sovereign Health Launches Groundbreaking, Five-Part NIMBY Series

San Clemente, Calif. — August 22, 2016— Leading national provider of behavioral health treatment services, Sovereign Health, has launched a major new editorial campaign, “Not in my Backyard,” also known as “NIMBY.”  NIMBY represents the strong opposition by residents to having alcohol and drug treatment facilities located in their communities. This landmark series provides in-depth coverage about the complexities of NIMBY and addresses the concerns of taxpayers, behavioral health treatment providers, and advocates for people with physical and mental disabilities, marking a significant development in the NIMBY phenomenon. The inaugural article in the series, Not in my backyard: Communities resist mental health and alcohol and drug treatment facilities, provides an overview of the substance abuse and crime problem that exists in San Clemente and the concerns of residents. As noted in the piece, the NIMBY resistance is fueled by residents’ unjustified fears that allowing these types of businesses into their communities will reduce their property values and bring in more drugs and crime to their neighborhoods, despite the lack of evidence available to support these claims.

Thomas Renfree, Deputy Director, Substance Use Disorder Services at County Behavioral Health Directors Association California (CBHDA), notes in an interview with Sovereign Health, “It baffles me why communities think that it would be better to have people running around with untreated substance abuse rather than people who are actually in treatment programs. The community would seem like it would have a lot more to fear from untreated substance abuse rather than programs that are getting people into treatment.”

This opening article in the NIMBY series takes a deeper look at the most critical issues, including:

  • Complaints about residential treatment facilities
  • Federal and state laws protecting individuals with disabilities
  • Pushback laws and new California legislation
  • How crime has changed in San Clemente in the last 10 years
  • Unfounded concerns about the link between treatment facilities and crime
  • If whether or not crime is higher near drug treatment facilities

One of the key takeaways from Sovereign Health’s NIMBY series is that researchers have documented the importance of providing evidence-based treatments to people with mental illness and substance use disorders (SUDs), not only to improve their quality of life, but also to lessen the social and economic burden of these conditions on society as a whole. Although many people agree that individuals with alcohol and drug use problems benefit considerably from receiving treatment, local governments and residents often adopt the “not in my backyard” mentality when it comes to having such facilities located in their communities.

Look for the second and third installments of the NIMBY series, Not in my backyard: The endemic problems of mental illness and substance abuse in San Clemente, and Not in my backyard: How do violent crimes affect communities? to launch on Monday, August 29 and Wednesday, August 31, respectively. To follow Sovereign’s breakthrough NIMBY series, follow the story on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube with #NotinMyBackyard, #SanClemente, #Sovtalk.

Sovereign Health’s treatment facilities are licensed to provide both addiction/dual diagnosis treatment and mental health treatment, such as trauma, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Sovereign also offers treatment for chronic pain, eating disorders and cognitive deficits. Sovereign provides patients with advanced diagnostic assessment processes, the utilization of cutting-edge technology and strong medical and clinical leadership. The organization treats adolescents and adults and is also proud to serve active United States military personnel and returning war veterans.

About Sovereign Health

Sovereign Health’s mission is to provide a broad spectrum of high-quality behavioral health treatment services for adults and adolescents, including support services for family members. One factor that differentiates Sovereign from other treatment providers has been the company’s ability to offer separate mental health and addiction or dual diagnosis treatment programs at its facilities. For more information, visit


Media Contact:

Wendy Allen, Public Relations Manager: 866-686-0090