The League of Women Voters Clallam County has conducted a study of the Jamestown S’Klallam Healing Campus in Sequim, WA. After a thorough review of the information and facts related to the Campus, our own research into Clallam County’s opioid epidemic, the need for a comprehensive approach to address it, and our confidence in all of the partners in this project, the League on September 10, 2019 approved a Resolution in support of the Jamestown S’Klallam Healing Campus in Sequim, WA. The full text of the Resolution follows.
A RESOLUTION In Support of the Jamestown S’Klallam Healing Campus
in Sequim, Washington
WHEREAS, the League of Women Voters of Washington State (“the LWVWA”) supports drug abuse treatment programs as a means to reduce the demand for drugs, including integrated services as appropriate, long-term treatment, counseling and mental health services, to all substance abusers and to meet the needs of individuals with co-occurring disorders, as well as community involvement to provide alternative behavior opportunities for potential substance abusers 1; and
WHEREAS, the Board of the League of Women Voters Clallam County (the “Board”) recognizes the urgent need for such services in our County, given that between 2012 and 2016, the County has had some of the worst rates of opioid-related overdoses and deaths in the state of Washington, and had the second-highest drug overdose death rate in the state, and overdoses were the leading cause of accidental death during this period 2; and
WHEREAS medication-assisted treatment has been clinically proven to be an effective mode of treatment for certain people seeking help with opioid abuse disorder 3; and
WHEREAS, the Board and interested members of the League of Women Voters Clallam County (the “League”) have carefully studied the Healing Campus medical facility planned for Sequim, Washington including the wrap-around services to be provided, partner agencies, funding sources, safety, and location 4; and
WHEREAS the Board and interested members of the League have carefully studied the model for this project, Digwalic Wellness Center in Anacortes 5; and
WHEREAS it is within the authority of the League to take a position on a local issue based on the outcomes of our study, the consensus of participating members and a vote of the Board of Directors 6; and
WHEREAS the key partners in the Healing Campus: Olympic Medical Center, Jefferson Healthcare, and Peninsula Behavioral Health, and the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe Health Clinic represent the entities best equipped to achieve successful treatment and care of patients 7; and
WHEREAS the Jamestown Tribe, which qualifies for a greater Medicaid/Medicare reimbursement rate, and thus makes strong economic sense, is continuing its generous efforts to provide healthcare to our communities by taking the lead on this project 8; and
WHEREAS the State of Washington takes a regional approach to healthcare and allocates critical state funding on this basis, in the case of this project in the amount of $7 million dollars; and
WHEREAS the Healing Campus model will offer much more than just medication-assisted treatment, with “wrap-around” services for patients and their families, including primary and dental care and social services to secure food, housing and job training as needed, and this has been found to be a highly successful approach to treatment 9; and
WHEREAS there are no nearby clinics offering this wrap-around service model; and
WHEREAS the Healing Campus will be strictly regulated by the Drug Enforcement Agency and the Washington State Department of Health 10; and
WHEREAS Clallam County Sheriff Bill Benedict has studied and recommended safety and security measures at similar facilities, and has found no evidence of illicit, or illegal activities at the Didgwalic Clinic in Anacortes, and has stated that he is prepared to address such issues should they occur here; and
WHEREAS the designated location in Sequim is not near residential neighborhoods, schools, or the walkable Sequim Ave/Washington St downtown area, it is already zoned for medical use, and it is geographically situated in the middle of the Clallam-Jefferson service area 11; and
WHEREAS after reviewing all of the materials, arguments, and statements raised in opposition to this project and finding it based very little on facts.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the League of Women Voters of Clallam County enthusiastically and fully endorses the Jamestown S’Klallam Healing Campus proposed for Sequim, Washington and we offer our support and assistance to help make it a reality.
PASSED, by the Board of the League of Women Voters Clallam County, Washington, this 10th day of September, 2019.