How can New York State not know whether their licensed providers are alive or not? suggests that James A Garrett of Averill Park died July 11,2017. The obituary says that he “start[ed] multiple successful businesses in the addiction and recovery field and helping countless people better their lives through counselling and creation of new recovery pathways”

I have only found one James Garrett LCSW on the NYS Office of Professions website, and no record of him on the OASAS website.

This website documents my complaints about treatment at Recovery Resource Center in Albany. It has included my own medical records suggesting that a provider by the name of James Garrett ‘treated’ me as Samaritan Counseling‘s preferred addiction treatment ‘expert’, and documented concerns about his treatment model called the ARISE Intervention.

The problem is that in September of 2017, the ARISE Intervention Network tweeted to me that my complaints must have involved another person by the same name. They said it was a case of ‘mistaken identity’. I had recently exposed that James Garrett was charged with five felonies for fraud in another case, endured a 2 year suspension of his license in 2001 for “admit[ting] to charge of having been convicted of Criminal Facilitation in the Fourth Degree, a Class A Misdemeanor”, and had published my own medical records suggesting that he was suppressing complaints and extorting me.



I contacted the NYS Office of Professions to try to discern whether I was indeed mistaken about who I’ve been talking about for years now. The Office of Professions’ response was:

“That licensee is currently registered, but we have no way of knowing whether or not he is still alive. He could have passed away since the last time he registered (2016). Sometimes the family notifies us of a death, but we have no way of knowing if no one notifies us.

NYS Education Department
Office of the Professions
Division of Professional Licensing Services”

I then said:

“I am notifying you of a concern about this licensee’s health status (alive or dead). Do you have no family contact information to verify and update your records?
Tom Gleason”

“No. We do not collect or maintain information on licensees families.
NYS Education Department”

“You can’t even attempt to contact him directly?
Tom Gleason”

“To determine if he is dead or alive, no.

The conversation went on a bit, her telling me that this was for the Office of Professional Discipline to handle, but when I asked her to forward my concerns, she told me that I could not use her inbox to circumvent the cease and desist order that NYS Office of Professional Discipline has against me, and that she would not forward my concerns.

Today I tried to call James Garrett directly, but found the number published on his website is a fax machine. I have asked the Office of Professions if they have any contact information for their currently licensed LCSW, so that I can hear his voice and verify that he is alive, as the ARISE Network says.

Further attempts to prove his death resulted in statements from the Office of Professions: “Birth and death records are NOT public records and their confidentiality is protected by New York State Public Health Law. Vital Records are not subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) and are not subject to public inspection.”

…which I took to mean that even if I can provide a death certificate, they will not accept that as evidence of his death. Also, that if I filed a FOIL request, I would not get access to information about whether NYS Office of Professions or any related agency like OASAS knows that James Garrett is in fact dead.

It seems that NYS Office of Professions may never have to acknowledge his death, which is kind of strange, considering that the ARISE Network is using this to confuse and deflect from facts about their treatment.