The Alcohol & Drug Council of Tompkins County will be holding a tour and discussion of the new Open Access Center in the Village of Lansing from 7 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, May 8.
Emily Parker, Director of Development at the Alcohol & Drug Council, said this event was created for the purpose of answering any questions community members may have about the new facility.
“We recognize that there are a lot of questions, understandably, when a new business moves into a community,” Parker said. “We thought it would be a nice idea to invite folks and the neighbors of the Open Access Center.”
Parker said there will be a PowerPoint presentation shown at the beginning of the event that will outline the healthcare services that will be offered at the center. Following the presentation will be a question and answer where those in attendance will have the opportunity to share their questions, comments and/or concerns regarding the facility, and the members of the Alcohol & Drug Council will either answer or address those questions, comments or concerns.
“Our mission, our services are around treating substance abuse disorders,” Parker said. “It’s a topic that can make people uncomfortable, that people can’t always understand. When we say, ‘Open Access Center,’ what does that mean? Understandably, the neighbors have questions about how busy an office is this going to be. What our hours are going to be. What are services look like. What they can anticipate.”
“We’ve had people reach out saying they’re very supportive and they wonder how they can help. We have people who have concerns and questions. So this just gives us an opportunity to come together and talk about some of those things to paint a picture.”
After the discussion, tours of only the Open Access Center will be available to those in attendance since it is the only part of the building that is currently operating. Parker said there will be conversations and information given about the medically supervised withdrawal detox and stabilization portions of the building.
Parker said it is important for the Alcohol & Drug Council to hold an open dialogue with the community about the center because the issue of substance abuse is of top priority.
“I think the biggest reason is that addiction and substance abuse is an issue that’s seen all over our community,” she said. “Every walk of life. … The Alcohol and Drug Council is trying to step up and fill a gap. There have been emergency services at the hospital and there’s long-term rehab services through organizations like Cayuga Addiction Recovery Services. But there hasn’t been a place where eventually people can go 24 hours a day for help with addiction. They can have medically supervised withdrawal detox services and stabilization.”
“Most people we talk to are very excited that there will be a place for people to go around the clock,” Parker added. “But it’s a very new model, it’s a very new kind of service to the community. So there are a lot of questions about how that looks and what happens and what can be anticipated. So I think the best conversations, the best communication happens when people sit down face-to-face and have a chance to gather information, get the overview, and then ask whatever questions they may have. We’ll always be happy to follow up with people if they have more questions or for anybody who’s not available on the eighth to meet. We can schedule a tour and conversation another time. It really matters to us in every way to be good neighbors in the community we operate in, and sitting down with the Lansing community is part of being a good neighbor.”