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Podcast: Understanding and Preventing “Not In My Back Yard” Opposition

In this second installment of a two-part feature on NIMBYism, guest Steve Fields of The Progress Foundation shares his views and experiences in dealing with community opposition to facilities like The PEER Center, featured in the previous episode. In addition to offering his views on the Center’s situation, he also shares his method for preventing community opposition before the opening of a facility. He also offers his opinions on why people are so afraid of such facilities, how to minimize or eliminate that fear, and reflects on the emotional impact of such opposition, which often can’t help being interpreted as a personal attack.


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NIMBY Show Highlights:

“[It’s about] fear and money – and righteousness doesn’t make it work. It makes the services work, but not the politics.” ~ Steve Fields

[4:00]   The problem with “NIMBY” as a name.

[6:07]   Steve’s observations about The PEER Center’s situation.

[8:42]   How can a non-profit prevent NIMBY opposition?

[15:15] Why are people and communities so afraid?

[25:39] The emotional impact of NIMBY.



About Our Guest

Steve Fields, MPA, has served as the Executive Director of Progress Foundation, a non-profit mental health agency since 1969. Progress Foundation provides a range of residential treatment services as alternatives to institutional care for persons with severe mental disabilities in San Francisco, Sonoma and Napa counties in California. Mr. Fields has been involved in the development of social rehabilitation programs for over 40 years. Progress Foundation pioneered the development of acute residential alternatives to hospitalization, and opened the first social model residential treatment programs for geriatric clients in the country and the first social model residential treatment program for women and their children. Under the leadership of the Executive Director, Progress Foundation has also taken a lead role in developing supported housing for persons with disabilities.

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Podcast: Understanding and Preventing “Not In My Back Yard” Opposition

The Psych Central Podcast

The Psych Central Podcast is a weekly podcast hosted by Gabe Howard. New episodes are released every Thursday at 7 am and can be found at or your favorite podcast player.

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APA Reference
Central Podcast, T. (2018). Podcast: Understanding and Preventing “Not In My Back Yard” Opposition. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 3, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Jul 2018 (Originally: 10 May 2018)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Jul 2018
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