Are We Bringing AWARENESS? YES!
September is National Addiction Recovery Awareness month. I feel like before this year it was something that organizations did and those of us in recovery would celebrate (sort of) privately with each other but very few of us would come out publicly and talk about alcoholism or addiction. I mean, why should we? The stigma that surrounds addiction is horrible. There are so many misconceptions around addiction that most of us hide in our anonymous meetings and only our close family and friends know we are in recovery.
It’s Time for a Change
NOT THIS YEAR! 2015 is going to go down in history as the year where it all changed. And if you want change where do you go? Washington, DC baby! They are predicting 50k-100k people in long-term recovery will be at the National Mall for #UNITEtoFaceAddiction on October 4th. I’ll be there because I believe it’s time we RECOVER OUT LOUD.
The Ann Arbor Women’s Group is an official partner with UNITE to Face Addiction, a grassroots organization developed to change public opinion and public policy. We’re also collaborating with some other great organizations in town like Home of New Vision and U of M’s Collegiate Recovery Program, EMU Students 4 Recovery and Maple Rock. Everyone is welcome on the bus! Come!!!
Any individuals who want to be a part of the pre-rally party we are having at Maple Rock on September 26th, where we are having a sign making, potluck eating, bonfire and S’mores making shindig, is WELCOME. You don’t have to be going to Washington to come to it. Come party, be with us in Ann Arbor, and then you’ll be with us spirit in Washington, DC. (Register)
Ok, back to the serious stuff. Let’s be honest, public policy around addiction isn’t working. We lost the war on drugs. There were more overdose deaths in 2014 then any other year. I’m tired of seeing my brothers and sisters die. I’m tired of people treating addiction like it’s a moral issue and not a health issue. I’m tired of people going to jail when they should be going to treatment OR when they get out of jail they are thrown right back into the same environment that they were in before. There aren’t enough detox beds, there aren’t enough free treatment options, there aren’t enough sober living environments. I’m tired of first responders not being equipt with a $33 opiate blocking drug that can save someone from overdosing and dying. Why? Because these things cost money. Government or state funded money. The sad thing is we spend billions on the “war on drugs” and a few million on treatment. Does that make sense?
No More Making Policies About Us Without Us
It’s time that policy makers listen to US, the addicts and alcoholics in long-term recovery. No more making policies about US, without US. We know the desperate need that’s out here. We deal with it daily. I’ve spent the past few days trying to help a guy get into a free detox because his insurance doesn’t cover addiction treatment. Really??? It’s a deadly, yet treatable illness and insurance won’t cover it? I suppose they are ok with covering all of the other illnesses that stem from years of heavy drinking though, right?!
OK, now I’m just ranting. The bottom line is we’ve let our silence define us and we can’t change public policy until we change public perception about addiction. The time has come. On October 4th, 2015 THE SILENCE ENDS. Get ready for it…
Peace, Love & Sobriety,
A2WG is not affiliated with any other organization