Press

09/18/2017 - Avi and Julie Israel are the recipients of the New York State Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) Commissioner’s Award for 2017

Avi and Julie Israel are the recipients of the New York State Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) Commissioner’s Award for 2017, presented at the Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Providers (ASAP) Conference in Buffalo, NY on September 18, 2017.  

Robert Kent, Chief Counsel for OASAS, had this to say: 
 
“I’m sure many of you know their story, but I won’t get into it, other than to say that they have become tireless advocates in our field. When I say field, I broaden it beyond the state to the federal and national level. They are recognized experts, and it is wonderful what they have done, given that their son Michael succumbed to opioids. It is immense honor to give this award; they are true stalwart advocates; they are part of the reason we are achieving what we are achieving. But it goes beyond the advocacy; what they’ve become is a model. It’s happening across the state. They are creating supports for the families and the loved ones, to get them into treatment, to support them during treatment, and to support them after the treatment. It’s a wonderful organization, and I congratulate Avi and Julie."
 

06/30/2017 - Editorial: Home detox is a radical idea, but it could be another path to saving lives

By , Buffalo News

The crisis is overwhelming the health care system. There aren't enough beds to handle all those who are detoxing. Intelligent creativity is called for. That's what Israel's proposal is. It will need to be monitored closely for its best chance of long-term success, but under the circumstances, it is worth pursuing.

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5/05/2017 - Local Activist Working to Raise Awareness of Dangers of Opioid Addiction

By Sarah Blazonis, Time Warner / Spectrum News

"Other doctors can take over the clinic and provide treatment to the people who need it without judging. One of the most important things -- we cannot judge the people who need help," said Israel.

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04/19/2017 - Turning Loss Into Hope: Save the Michaels

By Susan Murphy, Friends of Recovery NY

We've changed the laws in New York State by advocating for the tightening of regulations on opiate prescribing. As a result, pharmacies now monitor the prescriptions people fill and cross-reference their prescriptions from other pharmacies, which eliminates multiple prescriptions being filled for the same medication.

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03/28/2017 - Finding a 'spiritual solution' in midst of opioid epidemic

By Buffalo News

"Giving the gift of our presence and removing the stigma of addiction offers support,"

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02/21/2017 How can parents help their opioid-addicted children? A new approach

By

"Family members often think that it is only the addict that needs to start changing, but it is really about the dynamics in families, how people communicate, the respect, the understanding and that is usually not the case in a lot of these use situations, " said Karen Knab, a licensed therapist who volunteers at the facility. "It is so important to work with everyone in the family.

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10/29/16 - Racing against drug addiction: Save the Michaels of the World

By Kaylee Wendt, WIVB

When you think of drug addiction, its easy to overlook prescription pain killers, but a surprising amount of young adults choose pain killers as their drug of choice.

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10/25/2016 - Bishop urges students to say 'No"

By George Richert, WNY Catholic News

"The reason I want to tell you this stuff is to make you aware of how serious addiction can be and what I would like you folks to do is maybe you have a conversation with your parents and ask them to start talking to you about addiction."

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06/22/2016 - Will the new opiate law work?

By , and Buffalo News

This is a huge victory. It means people can use services when they are most in need, Israel said. It's too late to do something for those of us who have lost kids in this epidemic, but it will help others.

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06/22/2016 - New law to fight opioid epidemic signed in Buffalo

New Law to Fight Opioid Epidemic signed by Governor Cuomo in Buffalo. Speaking to a large crowd in Evergreen Commons, a former church at Georgia St. and Prospect Ave., Gov. Cuomo said under the new law, insurance companies no longer have the right to stop a medical decision.

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3/04/2016 - City Comes Together to Raise Awareness on Opioid Addiction

By , Buffalo Rising

Mayor Byron Brown began the evening by saying, This meeting is about listening and about finding solutions. Too many individuals are dying from drug overdoses.

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02/18/2014 - Call for first responders to be armed with Narcan for Heroin OD

 WBFO News

"We have more opiate pills in Western New York than any other part of the state.  I would like to see every municipality from the shores of Lake Erie to the beaches of the Atlantic, get together and decide that you know what we are going to carry Naloxone, because we are going to put a stop to killing our future," said Israel. "A lot of these people that are overdosing and dying are the future of this state and we just let them die."

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10/11/2013 - Big pharma and big problems with painkillers BUSINESS

By Matthew DanemanRochester Democrat and Chronicle

Israel has been a frequent and vocal advocate since 2011 for tackling the growing problem of prescription drug abuse, including testimony in 2012 before the U.S. Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control And his advocacy helped lead to New York lawmakers unanimously passing the Internet System for Tracking Over-Prescribing law, or I-STOP, which went into effect in August.

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1/23/2013 - Painkiller Paradox: Feds Struggle To Control Drugs That Help And Harm

NPR

Israel, who lives in Buffalo, N.Y., is now on a mission to prevent more people from dying from their addiction to prescription painkillers. And he's far from alone.

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06/08/2012 - Senator Kennedy, Avi Israel Praise Deal Struck on Prescription Drug Tracking System

By Timothy M. Kennedy

A year after Michael Israel's death and months after the push began for the Michael David Israel Laws and Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's Internet System for Tracking Over-Prescribing (I-STOP), a deal has been struck to reform the system. Many of the concepts originally proposed in the Michael David Israel Laws such as drug-tracking reform, physician training, patient information and electronic prescriptions are included in the negotiated bill.

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11/17/2011 - Parents Share Story of Son's Suicide After Prescription Drug Addiction

By Scott Brown,WGRZ

What the Israels want to do is have the state set up a central registry system with the Department of Health where doctors must check to see what other drugs their patients may be receiving from other doctors, and that pharmacists must immediately report when they've dispensed a controlled substances to someone.

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