Episode 56: Devin Price: Recovery – Relapse - Recovery

September 28, 2018

We first met Devin Price in Episodes 45 and 46 of the Stand Up Speak Up Podcast, when he took us through his road to addiction, becoming a drug dealer and pimp and his eventual arrest. After serving three years in prison, he had returned to his hometown to start over and we ended on an optimistic note with Devin getting a new job and restarting a relationship with his mother, Linda, who had also started her own recovery. 

In this follow-up episode, we speak with Devin after a relapse that put him back into rehab. He tells us how one bad decision lead to slipping back into the world of partying and drugs that he and Linda had both tried to leave behind. As Devin decided to check himself back into rehab, he began keeping an audio diary of his final days before entering treatment and the aftermath once he was released.

Devin’s struggle is not over. He speaks to our host, Karla Stephens-Tolstoy, about trying to connect with his children, who have been put into the foster care system and are eligible for adoption. He also speaks to us about Linda’s relapse and how addiction continues to affect all of the members of his family.


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Executive Producer/Host: Karla Stephens Tolstoy 

Associate Producer: Jessica de Bruyn

Production Editor & Sound: Cesar Del Castillo

Narrator: Matt Cundill 

Receive our newsletter, contribute show ideas and feedback by emailing: karla.tolstoy@standupspeakup.ca

End Music: "The Best Is Yet to Come" by Ascot Royals (https://www.ascotroyals.com)
We want to thank Ascot Royals for the donation of this song, which speaks about overcoming adversity like that Devin has faced. Find their latest single, "Evil I Know" on iTunes, Spotify and places where music is sold.

Episode 55: Bursting the Bubble on Police Corruption.

August 30, 2018

Kelly Donovan is a whistleblower. Her story begins working for a major bank, marrying a police officer, then deciding to become a police officer. 

After only a few years, Kelly began to learn about internal inconsistencies, and unethical and unlawful decisions being made without any guiding policy or legislation.  In 2016, she addressed the issues with the Board, the oversight body of the police service, and as a result faced reprisal and was further silenced. She researched the prevalence of the issues and just how often police whistleblowers are silenced, while police leaders avoid any accountability.

After involving all legislated oversight bodies to no avail, Kelly resigned in June, 2017.  Upon her resignation, she released her Report of Systemic Misfeasance in Ontario Policing and the Coordinated Suppression of Whistleblowers; sendin the report to all MPPs and MPs in Ontario and the media. Kelly has since published the report on Amazon in eBook and paperback formats.

The she started her own business, Fit4Duty™ to educate employers, policy and lawmakers about the risks of having purely perfunctory vision and mission statements.  Too many Canadians work in a toxic environment due primarily to poor oversight and autonomous decisions made by inadequate management.

In this episode - you’ll hear what drove Kelly to start the business and what needs to be done to end the corruption.

Host and Executive Producer: Karla Stephens-Tolstoy

Produced by: Evan Surminski

Editor &Narrator:  Matt Cundill

Sponsor: Stand Up Speak Up Apparel

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Episode 54: Trust Me When I Say There Is No (Hero) In Heroin Part 2

August 22, 2018

In the first part of this two part podcast series interviewing Frank, an addict who has abused drugs from the age of 12, he told us the origins of his addiction and how sniffing glue as a child turned into full on heroin addiction as an adult. By his own admission Frank has done some terrible things, including using his child’s stroller to steal from shops so he could fund his addiction.

Along the way he has survived attacks from gangs of drug dealers, a punctured lung, septicemia, stab wounds and a knee infection that left him wheeling around, scoring drugs in a wheelchair. Time and time again the need to satisfy his addiction was always powerful enough for him to overcome any illness.

Host and Producer: Karla Stephens-Tolstoy
Co-Producer: Kris Mulliah
Editor &Narrator:  Dave Wheeler at SafetyNet 
Sponsor: Stand Up Speak Up Apparel https://www.standupspeakupapparel.com/

Episode 53: Trust Me When I Say There Is No (Hero) In Heroin

June 28, 2018
Franky Frank runs the My Cold Turkey Detox website where he shares the story and updates about his struggle overcoming drug abuse, primarily heroin and crack. His sister filmed his struggle as he detoxed cold turkey at her place in Sweden after 30 years as a chronic long term addict. Franky Frank - not his real name - is now in his forties, in recovery and is our guest on the podcast to tell us how, despite having fallen many times in the past, cold turkey detox does work for some.
In this first of a two-part series, Frank explains how be became addicted by the age of 12, and how that was the beginning of a lifelong struggle. 
Host and Producer: Karla Stephens-Tolstoy
Co-Producer: Kris Mulliah
Editor: Joel at East Coast Studio

Episode 52: Life is Easy, Living is Hard

June 12, 2018
Erica has endured a lifetime of trauma marked by a difficult upbringing, abusive relationships, an addiction to phone sex, attempted suicide, and a number of diagnosed mental health issues. 
Recently, we heard of a website called writeaprisoner.com. While Erica is not a prisoner herself, she has turned to the site in what seems to be a way of coping with her own past, and actually fell in love with a man on the inside, who turned out to only be using her. 
Erica’s story highlights yet another case of neglect and having nowhere to turn, nobody who believed her, when she needed it the most.
Host and Producer: Karla Stephens-Tolstoy
Editor and Co-Producer: Joel at East Coast Studio
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Episode 51: Rehab #9: The Rob Rawlings Story

May 30, 2018

Rob Rawlings is working hard to break the cycle of drug addiction in his family.

Despite his father’s abrasive nature and drug use, Rob continued to seek approval as his son. 

At the age of 14, Rob himself was introduced to drugs. It was only a matter of time before he tried opiates, and then heroine. To feed his addiction, Rob was led to a life of crime, he’d even steal from his own family. 

Now, at 43 years old, Rob is in rehab for the 9th time, but feeling optimistic - and says he’s in the best recovery home yet. 

In this episode, Rob shares his story, and we’ll hear what he’s planning to do with life after recovery. 

Host and Producer: Karla Stephens-Tolstoy
Editor and Co-Producer: Joel at East Coast Radio Creative


Check out these designs inspired by Rob's story:

Episode 50: The Pain of Perfection

May 17, 2018
Recently we’ve featured addiction stories of people who had clear trauma growing up that contributed to the path they took in life. However, these things can happen to anyone. 
Danielle McCarron is a recovery advocate, working to shift the stigma of addiction. She had what appeared to be the perfect life. A good home, good parents, good looks, and she was smart.
As some teenagers do, Danielle began experimenting with alcohol in her teenage years. By the time university rolled around, her drinking habits slowly transitioned from normal partying to drinking everyday. 
Eventually, it got to the point where, after being hospitalized for over-consumption, Danielle would purchase more alcohol on the way home after release. 
Today we’ll learn about her experience with alcoholism and recovery, and learn an important lesson - that you can’t force an addict to stop - you have to wait for them to be ready. 
This is an important episode for parents to hear and share with their children. No matter how perfect an individual’s life may appear, or how unlikely a candidate they seem for addiction, it can happen. This story will teach you how to see the signs early and understand how to help.
Host and Producer: Karla Stephens-Tolstoy
Editor and Co-Producer: Joel at East Coast Radio Creative

Check out these designs inspired by Danielle's story:



Episode 49: Nowhere to Turn

May 4, 2018
Today’s guest has 5 kids from 4 different fathers and was abused as a child. 
Rose is an artist with designs in the Stand Up Speak Up apparel store. Growing up, she faced physical, mental, and sexual abuse. She had nowhere to turn and was failed by everybody who should have helped her. 
Rose and her brother lived a terribly sad, cruel, and abusive childhood. At the age of 11, Rose was thrown out by her mother. For the next 5 years, she’d spend time in multiple foster homes, moving around as some were only temporary or others were abusive. At the age of 16, she was free from foster care, but was no better off, and had nowhere safe or clean to live. She had also begun seeking the love and attention she craved, from men.
To make a sad story worse, Rose’s brother and best friend would later pass away, leading her to a breakdown. 

Despite everything, Rose doesn’t consider her life to be sad, and leaves us with some inspiring words. 
Host and Producer: Karla Stephens-Tolstoy
Editor and Co-Producer: Joel at East Coast Radio Creative

Episode 48: Scientology Scars

April 18, 2018
There’s no shortage of content out there on the subject of Scientology. When we decided to tackle it, we knew the episode would have to focus on people, and the lasting effect Scientology has on its members once they leave.
The Church of Scientology has been in conflict with governments and police forces of many countries and is widely criticized. It was founded in the 1950s on a set of psychological principles created by science-fiction author Ron Hubbard. 
Controversy over the years includes allegations of criminal behavior by members, harassment of people perceived as enemies, the death of Scientologist Lisa McPherson while under the Church’s care, and attempts to force search engines to censor information which criticizes the church.
With today’s media landscape, keeping people quiet hasn’t gotten any easier. More and more people have left Scientology and spoken out about its negative effects, despite the Church’s repeated attempts to shut them up. 
Whether it’s the shocking and crazy stories, celebrity involvement, or simple curiosity, something continues to drive pop culture’s obsession with Scientology, and today, we share the stories of 4 people who escaped the Church, and are now speaking out: Lori Hodgson, Jenna Miscavige Hill, Sam Domingo, and Melissa Paris. Some are putting Scientology in the past, and some are still struggling to this day.
Host and Producer: Karla Stephens-Tolstoy
Editor and Co-Producer: Joel at East Coast Radio Creative

Episode 47: 2 Generations of Pain & Addiction: The Linda Price Story

April 12, 2018
When Linda Price graduated high school, her dream of the perfect life was with a home, a baby, and a husband. 
These all eventually came to fruition, but not in the way she had imagined. 
An unfulfilling childhood led to Linda seeking love in the wrong places, getting involved with multiple abusive men, and becoming addicted to drugs. She was always on the run, trying to escape life. After becoming pregnant with Devin, who was featured in our past 2 episodes, all Linda wanted was to give him the love and care she never had.
Sadly, she struggled with this, too, and would later give Devin the painful apology that “the drug was more important than you were.” 
From times of using drugs together to Linda refusing to take her only son in when he had nowhere else to go, their lives have been an emotional rollercoaster. 
With the mother and son now sober, living under the same roof, and Devin getting his life on track after finishing his prison sentence, we conclude the Price family series with a happy ending and positive outlook. Linda now has the son she always hoped she could raise.
To persevere through so many challenges in life is truly inspirational, and we thank Devin and Linda for sharing their stories. 
Host and Producer: Karla Stephens-Tolstoy
Editor and Co-Producer: Joel at East Coast Radio Creative


Stand Up Speak Up Devin & Linda inspired shirts: 


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