Volume 12 Number 11 | June 1, 2018 | www.agrm.org  



This issue of Street Smart is sponsored by:

Board Gives Go-Ahead for National Health Insurance Program for Members
The AGRM board officially voted to move forward with signing contracts for an association-wide mission-employee health benefits plan for members. The program will be owned by AGRM and administered through health insurance giant Cigna. We will be offering options for both PPO and HSA plans in all states, along with white-glove benefit management services for missions. Of the missions that have looked at the program so far, savings have ranged from $10,000 to $300,000, and that’s before these missions get renewal rates from their current insurers. For those who take advantage of this program, it could prove to be one of your most important member benefits. It will definitely offer a significant financial advantage for your membership dollar. Note: The program is available to AGRM members only.

The sign-up deadline is August 1 of this year, with open enrollment kicking off in late October or early November. The program will take effect January 1, 2019. For missions in the middle of their employee health insurance year, you can still participate. At the convention, there will be a session that will detail the program and introduce you to the vendors that are involved, but AGRM will make sure all missions are informed and given the opportunity to join.



Countdown to Milwaukee Continues!

All of the supplies and materials that it takes to put on a convention for about 1,000 people are now in a truck and headed to Milwaukee. Our team is putting the final polish on the event, which, by the way, is June 12–15 at the Wisconsin Center. If you haven’t registered, there’s still time to get in, even at this late date. 

We have a great line-up of speakers, including U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson. Dr. Carson is a follower of Jesus and is introducing some great new approaches to measuring success in regard to alleviating homelessness and poverty. 

Both our official convention hotel and our overflow hotel are sold out of our room block. But there are a lot of hotels around the convention center, where nearly all of the activity will take place. And don’t forget, all full-time paid registrants who are members from a mission in good standing are eligible to win a reconditioned Harley-Davidson Sportster XLH! The bike will be given away at the last general session of the event, and you must be present to win.

Registering is easy; simply visit our online registration page. Or show up in Milwaukee and register on-site.



Shout Out to Top Convention Sponsors
All of our mission members have a broad need for products and services and are continually searching for partners that will best enable them to serve their communities. In our upcoming annual convention, we will have a host of quality business partners such as our Title Sponsor, Milwaukee Direct Marketing, and our three major sponsors, Brewer Direct, Douglas Shaw & Associates, and One & All. We have great business partners such as these that boost the capacity of missions to bring life transformation to people who are hungry, homeless, abused, and addicted.

Refocusing and Rebranding Culminates Next Week with Our “Reveal Video”
We appreciate the messages we’ve been getting from many of you about our five animated rebranding set-up videos. (If you missed them, you can view all five here.) The most asked question is, “Can we use these to show our community what we are about and what we are part of?” The answer is yes. Help yourself.

The rebranding launch is almost over. Watch for an email and article from AGRM President John Ashmen and AGRM Board Chair Bill Mollard on Monday, and the “reveal video” by the end of next week.

Keep watching your inbox!

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FDA Approves First Medication to Reduce Opioid Withdrawal Symptoms
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) announced last week that lofexidine, the first medication for use in reducing symptoms associated with opioid withdrawal in adults, has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

According to a report by NUDA, lofexidine is designed to manage the symptoms patients often experience during opioid discontinuation. Opioid withdrawal symptoms, which can begin as early as a few hours after the drug was last taken, may include aches and pains, muscle spasms/twitching, stomach cramps, muscular tension, heart pounding, insomnia/problems sleeping, feelings of coldness, runny eyes, yawning, and feeling sick, among others.

In 2016, more than 42,000 people died from an opioid overdose, or approximately 115 people per day. Although effective treatments exist for opioid addiction, painful and difficult withdrawal is one of the reasons treatment fails and relapse occurs. 

By alleviating symptoms associated with opioid withdrawal, the new drug could help patients complete their discontinuation of opioids and facilitate successful treatment. To date, no other medications have been approved to treat opioid withdrawal symptoms.

Hospital Begins Treating Bitcoin Addiction 
Trading crypto currency can be addictive, according to experts at an addiction treatment center in Scotland.

According to an article by Vice, Castle Craig, a 30-year-old Scottish addiction rehab facility, which treats drug, alcohol, and gambling addictions, is now helping crypto-users find some solace. Surrounded by the scenic countryside outside of Edinburgh, addicted cryptocurrency traders can seek treatment through the center’s gambling program.

Chris Burn, a gambling therapist at Castle Craig Hospital, said in a press release that bitcoin trading, with its fast pace and potential for high risk and high reward, appeals to the same types of personalities drawn to gambling.

Through a 12-step program, Burn and his colleagues are trying to intervene to help those who can’t help but trade bitcoin—especially those who have incurred serious financial losses because of their addiction. Castle Craig said it had been receiving requests for such a program, according to MarketWatch, and they’ve received hundreds of inquiries from around the world since announcing they'd be treating crypto addiction.

Indiana Company Helps Workers with Addiction Recovery
Roughly one out of 10 applicants for jobs at a factory in Richmond, Indiana, had failed their drug tests. A handful of the 450 people already working there had failed random drug tests as well. With opioids ravaging the region, the CEO of Belden Inc. was short-staffed while orders for the company's computer networking equipment were pouring in.

This challenge is confronting employers across America. Drugs are sapping a workforce already spread thin across a tight job market. According to an article on CNN Money, some employers have dealt with the opioid crisis by altering their insurance contracts to discourage physicians from prescribing addictive painkillers.

CEO of Belden Inc., John Stroup, decided to do much more than that. What he came up with what could be a model for employers across the country. For Stroup, the decision was a simple cost-benefit analysis: How much would it cost to help people get sober, compared to what he was losing by not having them available to work? 

After a few meetings with board members and addiction experts, he came up with a plan. If an applicant or a current employee fails a drug test, but they still want the job, Belden pays for an evaluation at a local substance abuse treatment center. People deemed to have a low risk of developing an addiction can spend two months in a non-dangerous job before they are allowed to operate heavy equipment again, as long as they pass periodic random drug tests for the rest of their time at the company.

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Race Is Less of a Factor in Homeless Youth’s Contact with Police
Non-white homeless youth between the ages of 16 and 19 are more likely than white homeless youth to report harassment by police and to be arrested, according to a new study released today by the Crime and Justice Research Alliance, a nonprofit organization that provides policymakers and practitioners with research on criminal justice issues.

According to an article from Education Dive, researchers from the University of Nebraska, also found that white students, who either live on the street or in abandoned buildings, were just as likely to report harassment. And if they reported harassment in the past, they were just as likely as youth of color to be arrested.

The results were drawn from the Midwest Longitudinal Study of Homeless Adolescents and focused on 428 homeless and runaway youth from small to medium urban areas in Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Nebraska. According to a press release, the findings “suggest that the increased visibility that comes with living on the street and experiencing prior police harassment among homeless youth may set in motion subsequent events that culminate in arrest.”

Study Finds That Drugged Driving Is on the Rise 
A new study by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) reported that drugs are being detected more often in drivers responsible for fatal crashes. Although it's difficult to tell when drugged driving is a cause of accidents, the findings renew concern that marijuana and opioids are factors for a growing safety crisis on American roadways.

According to an article in USA Today, some 44 percent of drivers killed in crashes in 2016 who were tested afterward had drugs in their system, according to the GHSA study. That's up from 28 percent a decade ago. To be sure, traces of marijuana use remain in the body for much longer than alcohol, meaning a driver who tests positive wasn't necessarily high. 

Of drugged drivers killed in crashes in 2016, more than half tested positive for multiple substances. As drugged driving has become a bigger issue, the percentage of fatal accidents in which alcohol played a role has dipped. Of drivers killed on the road, 38 percent were drunk in 2016, compared with 41 percent in 2006, according to the study funded by the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility.

Many Homeless Youth Are Pregnant or Parenting
Nearly half of America’s homeless women and girls are parents or are about to be parents, a chilling new study has found.

According to an article in Youth Today, another 18 percent of homeless young men or boys are fathers themselves, the University of Chicago’s Chapin Hall found in the latest of its research briefs on youth homelessness. In total, people who are 18 to 25 years old and have been homeless in the previous year are parents of some 1.1 million Americans, researchers found.

The homeless parenting study is the third in a series by Chapin Hall. The research group wants to create a baseline for longitudinal studies of youth homelessness in the U.S. Previous studies have focused on risk factors of youth homelessness and on the plight of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer youths.


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The following job positions are currently open at AGRM member missions. Please visit www.agrm.org/careers to view full descriptions and to apply. Click here for instructions on using AGRM's Recruiting Center to post open positions for your mission.


Program Manager - Homes for Life: Miracle Hill Ministries, Inc., Greenville, SC

Biblical Pastoral Counselor: Union Gospel Mission (Spokane), Spokane, WA

Bookkeeper: Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Care Support Specialist: Light of Life Ministries, Inc., Pittsburgh, PA

Case Management Specialist-JPWP / Live On Position: St. Matthews House, Naples, FL

Chief Development Officer: Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Chief Operating Officer: Helping Up Mission, Inc., Baltimore, MD

Development Associate: The Path of Citrus County, Beverly Hills, CA

Development Director: Home of Grace, Vancleave, MS

Development Officer : The Rescue Mission Tacoma, Tacoma, WA

Director of Development: Rockford Rescue Mission Ministries, Inc., Rockford, IL

Donor Development Professional: Madera Rescue Mission, Madera, CA

Events Coordinator: Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Executive Director: Jericho Road Ministries, Inc., Brooksville, FL

Food and Beverage Driver: San Francisco City Impact, San Francisco, CA

Food Manager: Beacon Light Mission, Wilmington, CA

Food Services Manager: Turlock Gospel Mission, Turlock, CA

Grant Writer: Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Guest Services Assistants - Full-Time & Part-Time: Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Health and Wellness Center Manager: San Francisco City Impact, San Francisco, CA

Kitchen Ministry Coordinator: Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Leader of Women's Addiction Recovery Centre: Union Gospel Mission, Winnipeg, MB

Major Gifts Officer: Buffalo City Mission, Buffalo, NY

Marketing & Digital Communications Associate: Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Men's Transitional Living Director: Lexington Rescue Mission, Lexington, KY

Overnight Supervisor: Hope Gospel Mission, Eau Claire, WI

Payroll Specialist: Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Public Relations Manager: Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Recovery Services and Support Navigator: Safe Harbor, Hickory, NC

Resident Advisors: Hope Gospel Mission, Eau Claire, WI

Residential Coordinator_Cornerstone Manor Facility: Buffalo City Mission, Buffalo, NY

Salesforce Data Analyst: Atlanta Mission, Atlanta, GA

Senior Director of Justin's Place: St. Matthew's House, Naples, FL

Shelter Manager : Turlock Gospel Mission, Turlock, CA

Shelter Supervisor: Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Shepherd's Door Program Manager: Portland Rescue Mission, Portland, OR

Support Services Coordinator: Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Volunteer Coordinator: Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Women's Recovery Counselor: Union Gospel Mission (Spokane), Spokane, WA

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Love: A Faith Barometer

We ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing (2 Thessalonians 1:3 ESV). 

Have you ever said to yourself, “I need to increase my faith”?

Maybe you have read a book or listened to a sermon series that encouraged your faith.

It’s fairly common for us to review our relationship with God, but less common to focus on the outward expression of our faith, which is love.

Do you ever look at your life and think “I am not loving others enough, therefore my faith is lacking”?

Faith isn’t simply head knowledge of the Bible or Jesus; even Satan and his demons believe that Jesus died and rose from the dead (James 2:19).

We must realize that true faith produces fruit, and that fruit is love.

Paul understood that the church in Thessalonica was increasing in their faith because their love for each other was also increasing. Paul told Timothy that he is to love from a pure heart, good conscience, and a sincere faith (1 Timothy 1:5).

Our faith is ultimately in a God who showed love toward us, His enemies, through the death of His Son on a cross (Romans 5:10).

Unfortunately, many who are outside the church see it as a people who have faith in a God or Bible that produces the fruit of hate and condemnation instead of love.

Our faith in Jesus should show through our love toward those both outside and inside the church.

Do you feel as though your faith is strong, yet you seem to not show love toward others?

Take some time with the Lord today and search your heart: Are your actions expressing your faith in God? Do others feel loved when they interact with you? Try seeing your love for others as a barometer for your faith in Jesus and see how it can change your life (and the lives of those around you!).


Devotional used with permission of Daily Devotionalswww.shortdailydevotions.com.

To contribute: If you would like to write a devotional thought for StreetLight, please make it about 200 words and include at least one Bible verse or passage, and submit via

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All Scripture quotations taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, unless otherwise noted. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

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