Supporting those fighting addiction
Metropolitan King County Council Vice ChairReagan Dunn and Councilmember Dave Upthegrove were joined by their Council colleagues today in recognizing September as National Recovery Month. This observance honors those recovering from addiction and sheds light on the importance of treatment and prevention.
This year, Dunn, in collaboration with Washington State Senator Joe Fain and Representative Chris Hurst, proposed legislation actively protecting the relationship between individuals in addiction recovery programs and their sponsors. With Fain’s and Hurst’s sponsorship of the bill and support, Washington became the first state in the nation to add legal protections for those in fellowship recovery programs.
“It is so important for anyone in recovery to know there are people available and willing to help them succeed,” said Dunn. “In light of the Washington State Legislature’s recognition of this issue’s importance, it seemed fitting that the Council acknowledge National Recovery Month.”
“We are all impacted by addiction,” said Upthegrove. “Nearly everyone has a friend, family member or loved one who is struggling with addiction or in recovery. I’m proud of the county for acknowledging and celebrating the strength and effort it takes for a person to achieve sobriety.”
“Sadly, I’ve just learned first-hand about the crucial importance of drug treatment. My husband called me this morning while I was on the bus to work to tell me that our 26 year-old nephew had died of an overdose last night,” said Councilmember Jeanne Kohl-Welles. “He had been in and out of treatment for an opioid addiction. Recovery can take years and the availability of affordable and quick treatment for people in crisis can save lives.”
National Recovery Month is a national observance held every September to educate Americans about the substance abuse treatment and mental health services that can help those struggling with addiction live a healthy and rewarding life.
Recovery Month began in 1989 as Treatment Works! Month, which honored the work of substance use treatment professionals in the field. It then expanded into National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month in 1998, when it started celebrating the accomplishment of individuals in recovery.
WHEREAS, since 1989, government entities, nonprofit organizations, and others around the United States have recognized the month of September as National Recovery Month; and
WHEREAS, according to a 2014 study, 88,000 people die from alcohol-related causes annually, making alcohol the fourth leading preventable cause of death in the United States; and
WHEREAS, today, approximately one in six Americans suffers from addiction, and with the current opioid abuse epidemic, that number is rising; and
WHEREAS, observing National Recovery Month provides us as a county the opportunity to reflect on the issue of addiction as a disease; and
WHEREAS, as with other chronic illnesses, giving sufferers the proper treatment and care is critically important to overall health; and
WHEREAS, for those who have been able to take back their lives and experience long-term recovery, this observance honors their hard work as well as the service providers who make recovery possible;
NOW, THEREFORE, we, the Metropolitan King County Council, proclaim September 2016 as
|NATIONAL RECOVERY MONTH|
in King County and recognize that supporting both those who suffer from addiction and provide addiction recovery services is important to the overall health of our region.
DATED this twelfth day of September, 2016.