Treasure Coast Progressive Alliance January 2016 Meeting

From Sharon Lux via Cyndi Lenz

TCPA January Meeting : Solar Energy
Monday, January 25, 2016 6:30 PM

Treasure Coast Progressive Alliance January 2016 Meeting


Fort Pierce Garden Club

911 Parkway Drive

Fort Pierce FL  34954.
Come & join the activism moving forward in 2016. Fracking in Florida, Amendment 1 Issues, upcoming solar amendment and voter registration are some of the current issues being addressed by TCPA

Rest of the post is here is in my new space

Save the Date: Awake the State

Save January 12,2016 for Florida Awake the State. This year the Treasure Coast will have our very  own “Awake the State” group at 4 PM. The Meeting place will be the River Warrior Lodge.

Thank you to Mary Westcott Higgins, candidate for State Representative for District 82 for bringing “Awake the State” to the Treasure Coast.

Facebook Page for Treasure Coast Awake the State

Facebook Page for Awake the State Florida



We will rally on the bridge to “Awake the State”  the first day of Legislative Session. We will “Awake the State” with signs addressing our concerns. Then, we will have snacks and drinks at the Lodge.

Awake The State is an organic, grassroots movement of everyday Floridians fighting to protect and restore our middle class.

This is a non partisan event.

From the “Awake the State” website.

“Gov. Rick Scott and his extreme allies in the Legislature have launched an all-out assault on Florida’s middle class. They’ve put our public schools in danger, harmed the quality of health care Floridians receive, and cost our communities thousands their jobs.

Floridians are fed up with their governor and legislative leaders insisting on extreme, regressive policies that hurt hard working Floridians. Enough is enough.

It’s time to Awake The State and urge our state legislators to end the war on our middle class and instead work to protect and restore our middle class by investing in our future.”

We are being assaulted by all sides by the very people who were elected to protect us.

From the Awake the state website

Commonly Asked Questions

What is Awake the State and how did it begin?
Ever since Gov. Scott and legislative leaders announced their plans to cut thousands of jobs, raise taxes on middle class Floridians and make the deepest cuts to education in history, people from all across the state have been looking for a way to voice their opposition.

Progress Florida, Florida Watch Action and America Votes joined together to provide a platform for everyday Floridians to make their voices heard. In 2011, Awake the State started as a Facebook page that quickly grew to thousands strong who organized rallies in cities all across the state of Florida on March 8th, the opening day of the legislative session.

Who is behind it?
Awake the State is made up of Floridians from every walk of life including educators, healthcare workers, police and firefighters, advocates for consumers, middle class families and more.

So please join in so we can all make a difference.





How to dispose of unwanted medications

How to dispose of unwanted medications.

This is a huge issue. It’s HUGE! Not only is it an issue for us, our St Lucie River and Indian River Lagoon but its an issue everywhere people flush their medications down the toilet. This is also true for your pet’s medication. This is true for all medication.



“”While the concentrations of these substances found in our water bodies are hundreds or thousands of times lower than the therapeutic dosages found in the medications that we take, research has shown that there can be effects on aquatic organisms like fish and frogs.”

Here is some advice. If your starting a new medication gets a weeks worth and a prescription. Many people get large quantities of medication and they do not really know if they can tolerate it.

Transfer unused medicines to collectors registered with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Authorized sites may be retail, hospital or clinic pharmacies, and law enforcement locations. Some offer mail-back programs or collection receptacles (“drop-boxes”). Visit the DEA’s website or call 1-800-882-9539 for more information and to find an authorized collector in your community.

If no disposal instructions are given on the prescription drug labeling and no take-back program is available in your area, throw the drugs in the household trash following these steps:

  1. Remove them from their original containers and mix them with an undesirable substance, such as used coffee grounds, dirt or kitty litter (this makes the drug less appealing to children and pets, and unrecognizable to people who may intentionally go through the trash seeking drugs).
  2. Place the mixture in a sealable bag, empty can or other container to prevent the drug from leaking or breaking out of a garbage bag.
  3. Make sure you scratch out or remove the prescription label. (Do this with empty prescription bottles that you throw in the recycling bin.)

I really do not like the idea of throwing your medications in the garbage. What if someone’s dog got loose and ate it and got sick and died. Or some wild animal got a hold of it. This is last ditch effort. Better than flushing but not better than dropping off.


I really like the idea of bringing it somewhere and having it disposed of correctly.

Click here for a drop off places in Florida.

Here is a list of our local places.

Brevard County
The Prescription Drug Take-Back Initiative
Citizens of Brevard County can drop off medications at any of the BCSO precincts.
Find addresses here:

Indian River County
The Sheriff’s Office provides this service at 4055 41st Avenue, Vero Beach. See this website for more information:

Palm Beach County
“Operation Pill Drop” has several drop-off sites listed here:

Martin County
Permanent Drop Box Location:

Martin County Sheriff’s Office
800 Southeast Monterey Road
Stuart, FL

There is also one at the substation in Indian Town

16550 SW Warfield Blvd, Indiantown, FL 34956
(772) 597-2101


St. Lucie County
Permanent Drop Box Location:

Port St. Lucie Sheriff’s Office.
Prescription Medication Disposal Box

Check out this great program by Lake County. I think all of us that live near the Indian River Lagoon can do this very easily.

Lake County
Tavares, Florida has established a “Don’t Flush” campaign that resulted in an overflow of unused medications being turned into the Tavares Police. It’s not unusual for the collection box to be filled to capacity several times a day. The low cost campaign consisted of 50 posters and 2,000 bookmarks. The posters were supplied to local doctors and other medical providers. Bookmarks are distributed to our local library and to doctor’s offices. A City staff member, when available, will stop by nursing homes and assisted living facilities to drop off a supply of bookmarks or to informally speak to staff members about the program. The campaign was initiated by our Water Department and our message emphasizes the harm these pills can do to our water supply and our local wildlife if disposed of by flushing or pouring them down the drain.


How to Dispose of Unused Medications.

Florida Department of Environmental Protection


The Other Mom

Guest Blog

The Other Mom

by Darcy Flierl
I can’t express the strangeness of knowing my daughter calls her step mother “mommy” more than I can express the emotion provoked by this occurrence.  When I’m found in the same vicinity as my daughter and her younger half-brother, she introduces me as her “other mommy”.  The whole experience of my daughter having another mother has been a mood challenging event to say the least and has afforded me the opportunity for reflection and self-growth.  Yay Me! Not!
Self growth isn’t easy and it doesn’t feel real great.  Sometimes I have to grin and bear the emotional pain until I find the right coping skill to get through the uncomfortableness of it all.  You never know what life event can throw you into a tail spin.  The complexities of your daughter having another-other mommy- presents a multitude of issues that extend beyond what this other woman is called.

When getting a divorce, it is natural to think about what kind of effect your x’s new partner might have on your child. Mostly, you hope the new influence will be a positive one.  In my mind, this woman was going to be a friend to her; an extra loving adult that would listen to her, support her and ultimately step aside and let me and her husband, parent our child in the way we always had, like “business as usual”.  I lacked the foresight to consider the fact this extra parental figure was going to have opinions about my parenting, scheduling needs to be considered, or that financial decisions concerning my daughter would concern her.  My daughter did get the type of step mother I wanted for her.  I, however, was not emotionally prepared for the negotiating, the opposition, and the resistance that would become a common way of “doing business” with the other side.
It’s been a battle of the wills, two families, one common daughter- with both sides willing to fight till the bitter end.  I’ve come to learn that this war creates long term, chronic stress that is detrimental to everyone’s well being.  Yet, the disagreements, lack of commonality and cooperation linger from year to year.  I’ve given up hope that harmony and understanding will ever be cultivated.  I had to come to accept that I wanted my child’s dad and “other mommy” to trust me as a parent, to respect me as her mother, and allow me to parent my only child the way I had always dreamed and the way I had, pre-divorce.  Once I accepted what I was truly fighting for, I then had to let it all go.  I say that like it was easy or as though it’s been accomplished.  In fact, it’s a constant process of letting go.
A few nights ago I watched the movie Hector and the Search for Happiness, in which a psychiatrist goes on an international traveling expedition to understand the meaning of happiness.  One insight Hector achieved was, “Avoiding unhappiness is not the road to happiness”.   I spent a lot of time thinking about this concept.  My most recent co-parenting coping skill has been to avoid contact at all cost.  Of course, avoiding is not a viable option when your daughter spends 10 days a month with her “other family”.  It occurred to me that I’ve been confusing acceptance with avoiding.  I’ve been preaching detachment and acceptance to my clients as well as personally using this framework, long before I became a Mental Health Therapist.   Understanding the philosophy and experiencing it are two distinctly different things.  My emotional reaction to certain stimuli is proof I have not yet mastered this idea called, Acceptance.
All the latest research as to how to manage depression and anxiety is shining the light on something called Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy.  The theory, developed by Philip Barnard and John Teasdale in 1991, states the mind as two main modes that include a “doing” and “being” mode.  The “Doing” mode drives us towards our goals and is bothered when things go differently than how we believe they should.  The “Being” mode doesn’t care so much about our goals but focuses on accepting and allowing circumstances without the need to change anything.   The level or degree of emotional dis-ease is based on which mode the individual primarily relies.  For good mental fitness, Barnard and Teasdale say that the goal is to achieve something they call Metacognitive Awareness (MA).  MA is the ability to experience negative thoughts and feelings as mental events that pass through the mind, rather than as a part of the self.  This is detachment and acceptance in action! There is finally research behind what Buddhist and Mystics have known for centuries; to separate oneself from one’s own thoughts and opinions in detail is to not be harmed mentally and emotionally by them.  In short, human suffering is a result of our attachments.
The reality of co-parenting post-divorce is not at all what I had envisioned in my divorce fantasy.  It turned out that the things that caused me so much upset are events that I didn’t predict.  There was only so much “prevention” I could have done to decrease my discomfort to the life changes.  Sometimes I’m able to maneuver the conflict was confidence, ease and even a glimmer of grace (The Being Mind).  Other times, I’m defensive, thoughtless and reactionary (The Doing Mind).  I’ve been fairly successful tapping into my Metacognitive Awareness at different times in my life where the discomfort is sudden and quick.    The ongoing conflict of co-parenting with another family in which there is so much discord, is like being exposed to a continuous state of trauma.
I’m mindfully aware of just how much I can’t stand the fact that another woman is indirectly making major decisions effecting my daughter that range from health, religion, and behavior, beliefs and life experiences, based on her value system.  It’s unlikely that one day I will wake up and be happy about the fact I have to battle to parent my own child.    Here lies the opportunity for self growth…..I don’t have to like it, I just have to accept it.  I have to accept that my daughter has an “Other Mom” who has different ideas and will attempt to impose these ideas and at times, she will succeed.    My “being” mind says, “It is, what it is”.  It doesn’t mean I give up being the mom I dreamed of being, rather it means giving up the divorce dream of how I thought it should be.  It means that I acknowledge that the “other mom” has provided a rare opportunity to master becoming a mindful mom.

If you would like to learn more about mastering your mind as part of the divorce recovery process, please contact Darcy to learn about upcoming workshops.  Email at

Darcy Flierl is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Certified Addictions Professional, and Certified Yoga Teacher currently offering individual and family psychotherapy in Stuart, Florida.  She also enjoys teaching in the Human Services Department as an Adjunct Instructor for Indian River State College and is Consultant for Non Profits along the Treasure Coast.

She has held board positions on for a variety of local and statewide agencies from the Department of Juvenile Justice’s State Advisory Group to CHARACTER COUNTS! and others.  Darcy has received a variety of awards for her community work such as;  Soroptimist’s Rising Star Award, the Community Champion Award from the United Way and for community advocacy from the Tobacco Free Partnership and was a 2013 Nominee as a Woman of Distinction.

Besides working to make Martin County a healthier place, she donates her time doing River Advocacy for the Indian River Lagoon and raising awareness about many issues effecting young people and families.  She treasures her time with her husband, and children attending local events and enjoying Martin County’s recreational opportunities.

For more information about Darcy you can visit her website at: