• Obstacles even with health insurance

    When talking about insurance coverage for substance abuse and mental illnesses, people often assume that the problem is limited to the poor. That assumption is way off the mark. Even for those families with “good” health insurance, coverage is far from easy to obtain. In my own experience, when trying to obtain coverage for residential […]

  • Open schools/lifelong learning

    America has two kinds of schools: the first are well-equipped private and suburban public institutions or magnet/charter schools with inviting facilities where kids feel at home, feel known, and can grow in a nurturing environment. Having invested in their infrastructure, these “beacon” schools have a vested interest in staying open long after the school day […]

  • When talking of health care, don’t forget that we are talking about people, not just about money

    Editor’s note: Following National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month, we’ve asked several individuals to share their ideas about addiction issues and the war on drugs. This week, Kimá Joy Taylor, Director of OSI-Baltimore’s Tackling Drug Addiction Initiative, closes the Recovery Month series with her thoughts. *** The recession and other health care changes have […]

  • A fresh new alternative

    Everyone has an opinion about school food. That’s because everyone who has attended school is a subject matter expert—those who finished high school have been exposed to approximately 2,400 lunches that were either eaten, ignored, or trashed.  Our consciousness of the nutritional value and quality of ingredients of these meals heightens when we send our […]

  • Ride your bike to work

    With spring here, my audacious idea is to ride your bike to work. I know this sounds crazy when you think of the narrow streets of Baltimore but, this city has the potential to become a great bike city.  For its size, 630,000 residents, it is very compact, making many of its neighborhoods easy to […]

  • We are the experts we seek

    Our society teaches us to seek out “experts”— to fix our cars, heal our bodies, manage our relationships, resolve our conflicts.  You’d think we can’t do much for ourselves.  We’ve created a “nation of clients.” Remember the commercial that shows a big-bellied man sitting at the lunch counter with massive indigestion?  The message of the […]

  • Protect our children

    My audacious idea is that we all commit to protecting and nurturing our children. Protecting our children requires responsible parenting. It is unacceptable that any child lives in a home where he or she is not wanted and cared for. It is up to us as a community to show all children that they have […]

  • Operation Pawpaw: a (food) security plan for Baltimore

    According to farmers and environmental activists, both the supply and the demand for locally sourced food have increased exponentially each year. The benefits of this movement are many, from the preservation of farmland (and the slowing of sprawl) to the reduced carbon load (grocery store produce travels an average of 1,500 miles to your table).  […]

  • Getting the data on health

    The first time I attended a community meeting with Mayor Sheila Dixon, I was intimidated by the set-up: Mayor in front, those of us in her cabinet sitting across on a stage behind her. Like sitting ducks. When the meeting started, my anxiety rose further.  An elderly woman came forward to ask a question.  The […]