Northern California Hospital and Institution Committee

Carrying the message of A.A. to the alcoholic in Corrections and Treatment facilities and facilities serving alcoholics in Northern CA

Contributions: Contribute online or via mail to: P.O. Box 192490 San Francisco, CA 94119-2490
(Make checks payable to: NORCAL H&I and note your Area # on the check)

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Guidelines on Providing Meetings During COVID-19 Shutdowns

As H&I volunteers, we are all now well aware the institutions and facilities which we serve are currently not allowing any visitors. We do not have any information as to how long this will be the case, as each facility and institution may have different guidelines for reopening. But we feel it is safe to say it will not be in the immediate future.

In an attempt to continue to serve the confined alcoholic, we offer the following information and guidelines for our member’s use.

Experience shows the best way to bring a meeting into a facility at this time, will be through some form of video conferencing. We do not endorse any particular company, or system of video conferencing. But we do ask that any company which a region, area, or meeting uses abides by all privacy guidelines concerning anonymity and release of medical or personal information.

Once a video conferencing system has been agreed upon, please follow the below procedures. They are designed to reduce confusion and maintain continuity with established meetings.

Facility or institution coordinators should contact their respective facilities or institutions to see if they are willing to allow video conferencing.

At this time, we don’t feel it is the responsibility of H&I to provide any kind of equipment within a facility or institution for this purpose.

If the facility or institution agrees to video conferencing, attempts should be made to conduct the meetings at the same time they were conducted when facilities were open. Of course, discussion with the facility regarding this is appropriate.

Only H&I volunteers are allowed to be on the video conference. We include this to mean they are following the Pink Pamphlet guidelines, and meet any facility or institution sobriety and service requirements.

All attempts should be made to have existing facility and institution volunteers stay in their commitments and conduct video conferencing meetings as if. This can lead to less confusion and anxiety levels for the confined alcoholic.