UNITE To Face Addiction Rally Calling for Action and Awareness in October
We have seen time and time again how addicts and alcoholics getting together to support each other can save lives. Every day groups gather in rooms all across the country to battle addiction. Throughout the year there are other organizations and movements gathering together to host events for their communities aimed at raising awareness to the disease of addiction. There has been hope and strength found in numbers.
Well now there is a collective of organizations planning to align the forces of good in MASSIVE numbers to raise awareness for addiction, and to make a call to action for Americans to see what the reality of addiction is, but also to see what rehabilitation and the amazing life in recovery can look like.
UNITE To Face Addiction
On Sunday, October 4, 2015, on the National Mall in Washington, DC, a historic rally called UNITE To Face Addiction has been dedicated to address the addiction crisis in our country. The founding organization is Facing Addiction, and according to this entity the longer term goal of this rally is to:
- Increase awareness
- Increase treatment options
- Destigmatize addiction
- Advocate for the government to implement evidence-based policies and regulatory practices in order to ensure more effective strategies for supporting addiction recovery
While UNITE To Face Addiction is a new event, the organization members, founders, and participating organizations all hope the rally will spur a transformation of how addiction is viewed, and how it’s treated, in America.
The event is a collaborative effort bringing together diverse stakeholders to stand up for the addicted and families still afflicted. Only a few months into the organizing effort the key members are excited to announce that we now have over 200 partnering organizations joining us to mobilize individuals and families for the rally, including diverse collaboration of groups who specialize in:
- Criminal justice
- Drug policy
For anyone unfamiliar with the name, Greg Williams is the director of the film The Anonymous People, which is a pretty famous feature-length documentary showing a more personal and in-depth perspective, specifically at the scope and seriousness of the problem of addiction. This was a production not focused on scandalous celebrity tabloid stories, or over-the-top reality TV, but instead was focused on real life accounts of addiction from addicts and their families.
Greg Williams is also a co-founder of UNITE To Face Addiction, as well as its campaign director. Williams is very excited about the coming event, and says the already 200 organization strong collective effort from all areas of addiction support is already completely unprecedented, and he is expecting their numbers to rise to over 500 in the coming weeks.
Williams stated in a recent interview:
“22 million people suffering from addiction and the more than 350 lives lost each day to alcohol and other drug problems in America. Twenty-three million others are in recovery, and the time has come for the afflicted and the affected to “come out” in a big way to humanize the addiction crisis and open people’s hearts to change.”
He says his hope is that this rally will not only create awareness around the addiction crisis, but similar to the AIDS Quilt this event will bring together this common constituency to speak up and demand action from policymakers. The rally is being held in The National Mall in Washington, DC, because organizers and supports believe this is absolutely a national crisis and deserves national attention.
Williams pointed out that for the first time in history tens of thousands of people will join together, come out of the shadows and face addiction publicly, stating:
“Americans need to understand that addiction is preventable and treatable, that far too many of us have been incarcerated and that people can and do get well. It is not hopeless—there are many things we can and should be doing—but we need to get assertive and vocal. Understanding that addiction is a health-care problem, not a crime, does indeed change everything.”
So far the event and the crowd committed to it is still growing at an incredible pace, and the organizers are encouraging anyone and everyone to visit the main organizations website and/or contact them to social media at:
- Twitter- @FacingAddiction
At the end of the day this is just one more way to get involved and help to take a stand against the stigma and stereotypes surrounding addiction, and recovery from addiction. The meeting is NOT specific to any fellowship, but invited every walk of life to participate in some way.
For those unable to attend the rally in person, there is a great deal of expense going into the event in October, so fundraising and donations are definitely accepted and appreciated. While some are unable to give monies, there are ways to volunteer and support this huge day for raising awareness and breaking the vicious cycle of shame and misconception, while daring the powers that be to do more to save these lives all over America who still suffer and die every day, because there is another way.
A huge part of recovery from drugs and alcohol is commitment and contribution, and getting involved in spreading the message of recovery can save lives. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-777-9588