This article was written for the PI News in 1996 by a member of the former WSC PI Committee (Jack A) and a member of the former WSC H&I Committee (Jacque B).
Hospitals & Institutions and Public Information Cooperation
The myth is dead. Public information and Hospitals & Institutions are not on opposite sides. We’re on the same team.
The purpose of the PI Committee is to further the primary purpose of the Fellowship of NA by informing the public, and the fellowship, about Narcotics Anonymous. The purpose of H&I is to carry the NA message of recovery to addicts who do not have full access to regular Narcotics Anonymous meetings. H&I presentations, except for those in longer term facilities, are intended to simply introduce those attending to some of the basics of the NA program.
By definition, it is apparent, these committee’s perform specific vital duties to our fellowship to further our primary purpose. All efforts need to be jointly coordinated. When a phone call is received by one of our hotline/helplines requesting information about Narcotics Anonymous, PI and H&I need to come together for a presentation to the persons requesting the information. PI informs those persons of what NA is; H&I determines if the facility is in need of a panel presentation. This joint effort allows the interested parties to get a full picture of who we are, and what we are all about.
In some instances the need for a combined presentation arises out of a situation occurring in a facility where an established H&I meeting/presentation already exists. Staff turnover would be one of these situations. The new staff may have expectations that H&I cannot fulfill, and it becomes necessary to inform the facility, one more time, who we are and what we do. Sometimes, (unfortunately) another combined effort must occur to defuse a crisis situation. These are just a couple of situations where PI and H&I cooperation is vital. We are still in a learning process and more will be revealed.
Careful planning of our presentations at learning days, workshops, and conventions is vital. We need to choose meeting times that don’t conflict with each other. Members should not have to choose whether they want to attend PI or H&I. If our efforts are to be unified we need to have the opportunity to learn from one another.
It is our experience that through our combined efforts the Narcotics Anonymous message of recovery is being received in places we were never before able to reach.
Southern California Region