UNITE Against SUD Stigma: A Special ECHO Series

About UNITE Against SUD Stigma

The IUPUI ECHO Center at the IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health in partnership with the Marion County Public Health Department will host a special ECHO series designed for medical professionals and first responders to break down stigmas for people with substance use disorder/people who use drugs. The sessions will be interactive and include presentations by leaders in the field.

Register for UNITE Against SUD Stigma: A Special ECHO Series

UNITE stands for:

Uncover your bias

Notice stigmatizing language

Identify & share resources

Take time to recharge

Empathize & empower

Session Schedule

May 24, 2023, 12-1pm ET | Kyle Brewer, BS, PRPS, NCPRSS

Addiction & Recovery: A Story of Hope, Redemption, and Community


Learning Objectives

  1. Participants will learn that people can and do recover from Substance Use Disorders.

  2. Participants will be able to describe what a Peer Recovery Specialist is and what services they provide.

  3. Participants will learn why it’s important to offer Peer Support Services in an Emergency Department/Hospital setting.

  4. Participants will learn what stigma is and how it impacts individuals with a Substance Use Disorder.

About the Speaker

Kyle Brewer, BS, PRPS, NCPRSS, is the Peer Support and Recovery Services Manager for NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals. He works for NAADAC remotely from Little Rock, AR, managing NAADAC’s peer support and recovery-related initiatives, trainings, contracts, credentials, and programming.

Brewer earned a Bachelor of Science in Addiction Studies from the University of Central Arkansas in 2013. He went on to use his lived experience with drug and alcohol addiction to become a Certified Peer Recovery Specialist, where he became the first Peer Recovery Specialist in Arkansas to be stationed in an emergency department.

In 2020, he became one of the first ten Certified Peer Supervisors in Arkansas. He is a member of NAADAC and The National Association of Peer Supporters (N.A.P.S.). Brewer is a trainer on a variety of topics, including Peer Support, Peer Supervision, Professional Development, and Family Opioid Response Narcan Training.

Brewer was recognized as one of the 2022 Arkansas Money & Politics Future 50. The Future 50 represents business, political and cultural leaders in Arkansas who are poised to do big things in their fields. Most recently, Brewer received the John Avery Award. This award is given to the staff member who has consistently excelled in his or her position, made outstanding contributions in the area of service and dedication to NAADAC, promoted teamwork and collaboration, and done so with a positive and forward-thinking attitude.

June 27, 2023, 12-1 pm ET | Rachael Cooper

Substance Use Disorder Stigma




Learning Objectives

  1. Participants will identify the three main forms of stigma that people who use substances or who have substance use disorder face.

  2. Participants will analyze scenarios where patients who use substances or who have substance use disorder encounter various types of stigma.

About the Speaker

Rachael is a Senior Director for the National Stigma Initiative. In this role, Rachael is responsible for a variety of initiatives aimed at reducing the stigmas associated with addiction, working with a variety of audiences that include employers, healthcare professionals, and more.

July 27, 2023, 12-1pm ET | Chazia "Chaz" Wall-Miles, LPC, NCC

Ethical Dilemmas in the Treatment of Those with Substance Use Disorders



Learning Objectives

  1. Participants will identify knowledge, attitude, and behaviors through self-reflection that may be amplifying the stigmatization of people with substance use disorders

  2. Participants will learn how to implement approaches to reduce the stigma of people with substance use disorders within one's self and have the ability to share such approaches with others

  3. Participants will learn how to identify the biological, environmental, behavioral, and social causes and consequences of drug use and addiction across the consumer’s lifespan and develop new and improved provider strategies to prevent maleficence toward those with substance use concerns and comorbidities.

About Chazia "Chaz" Wall-Miles

Chazia “Chaz” is a Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselor in Central Texas. Chazia is an Air Force Military Brat, Army Veteran, and Spouse of an Active-Duty Soldier. She loves working with children, teens, adolescents, families, and couples. Chazia is a nationally certified presenter and trainer for Mental Health First Aid, Counseling on Access to Lethal Mean, Columbia Suicide Severity Scale, Safety Planning, and Provider Ethics. Chazia believes everyone should have a safe and healing place to work through ever-changing difficulties. Chazia tries to help bring families and couples closer together through therapeutic work and help to have fulfilling, healthy relationships. Chazia is in the final editing phase in the dissertation writing phase of her Doctoral Program in Counselor Education and Supervision.


Dr. Eric Yazel

Indiana EMS Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Yazel has been recognized for his innovation and success in working through the local challenges presented during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. He brings extensive public health experience, including leadership positions with health systems, hospitals, and emergency medicine. He will be facilitating the sessions in May & June.

Andrea Perez

SSAR Stigma Assessment Coordinator

Andrea is a former law enforcement officer with a Ph.D. in Human Behavior and Development. She has led teams of professionals who conduct research, evaluation, and strategic planning for projects spanning a range of public health and social science domains. She has worked with Marion County Public Health Department, NAMI, Veteran Affairs, and the N.J. Superior Court. 

She will be facilitating the session in July.

Continuing Education Credits

The Indiana University School of Medicine (IUSM) Division of Continuing Education in Healthcare Professions will provide verification of attendance in the form of a transcript (Credit Summary) for all learners.

Physicians (MD/DOs) will receive AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ governed by the American Medical Association (AMA). Only physicians (MD/DO) are eligible to be awarded this credit.

Non-physicians will receive a transcript (Credit Summary) that shows "Non-Physician Attendance." Participants are encouraged to submit this transcript to their professional accrediting body.

The SSAR Project from NAACHO

The Marion County Public Health Department (MCPHD) was awarded grant funding to pilot the Substance Use Stigma Assessment and Response (SSAR) project through the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO). 

The SSAR project focuses on gaining a better understanding of the stigma held by EMS and emergency department staff in relation to patients with SUD to facilitate effective and targeted interventions.

The specific goals of this project are to:

  1. Reduce negative attitudes towards patients with SUD,
  2. Increase health professional engagement with and empathy for patients with SUD, and
  3. Improve patients’ feelings of empowerment to seek harm reduction and treatment services in Marion County.