Develop a system of community-centered health care clinics that reach people in their neighborhoods and their schools and ask the large health care institutions that benefit from Maryland’s tax system to commit to the creation and maintenance of these clinics. Create a city-based system of outcome-driven addiction treatment services that intervene when individuals are arrested for addiction issues and divert those individuals into treatment programs rather than long-term and expensive incarceration. Support initiatives for underserved families to establish universal prekindergarten and early intervention services to create healthy foundations for our families and to create the greatest opportunity for future success. Create professional assessment and evidence-based treatment programs for Baltimore youth who enter the juvenile justice system. Maintain and publicly report on crime statistics that are related to addiction issues or occur in close proximity to liquor stores so that the citizens of Baltimore are regularly informed of the role that addiction and substance use play in crime so that we highlight the need for greater and more effective treatment services. Establish principles and guidelines for evidence-based treatment for public health interventions, mental health and addiction services that are delivered to Baltimore residents and publicly report on the organizations that engage in evidence-based treatment and their outcomes. Expand the Office of Youth Violence Prevention and establish an identified community liaison in each neighborhood to develop violence prevention and response initiatives that fit the needs of the neighborhood and allow for ongoing community-based education for children and families who have witnessed or been victims of violence so that we can work to diminish the negative effects of trauma on our communities. Focus on eliminating food deserts for our citizens by working with neighborhoods to identify and engage healthy food vendors and locations that are accessible to everyone in the community and are especially focused on the needs of our fellow citizens who are most likely to live in poverty — our children and our seniors.
The writers are, respectively, a pediatric psychiatrist and the Green Party candidate for the Maryland House of Delegates from District 41, and president of the Matthew A. Henson Neighborhood Association.