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Individuals confess alcohol abuse to clergy
Date:7/14/2010

ment through the legal system, employee assistance programs, or social services," says lead author Amy Bohnert, Ph.D., M.H.S., assistant professor of psychiatry at the U-M Medical School and research investigator in the Department of Veterans' Affairs National Serious Mental Illness Treatment Resource and Evaluation Center.

What makes ministers, priests and rabbis ideal are they are involved in their communities, know their congregants well, and see them on a regular basis, researchers say.

"Clergy are in a unique position to notice changes in behavior over time," says Brian Perron, assistant professor of social work at U-M. "Their roles as senior leaders of churches, their embodiment of important tenants of their faiths, and their formal roles as caregivers of their congregations also lend clergy considerable credibility, particularly within African American communities. Clergy are often seen as being deeply committed to their congregants and willing to honor desires for confidentiality."


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Contact: Jessica Soulliere
jesssoul@umich.edu
734-764-2220
University of Michigan Health System
Source:Eurekalert

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