New federal data has revealed that an encouraging 72.2% of the over 29 million American adults with substance use disorders are in recovery. This statistic was highlighted at the Mobilize Recovery conference held in Washington, D.C. The purpose of the conference was to advocate for political action and support for individuals in recovery, with the ultimate goal of establishing people in recovery as a visible political group capable of enacting political and social change.
Research has shown that people who receive substance use treatment have higher rates of recovery, emphasizing the importance of a comprehensive, whole-health approach in facilitating recovery. To address this, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration released new data on recovery rates, accompanied by policy recommendations aimed at expanding access to healthcare and substance use treatment, implementing housing programs, and creating community-based support networks.
Recognizing the significance of this issue, federal officials are working to enhance access to medication treatment for substance use disorder and have established an “Office of Recovery” to support these efforts. The conference brought together advocates from various backgrounds to discuss a range of topics related to substance use, including addressing fentanyl use among teenagers, dividing opioid settlement funds, exploring harm reduction solutions, and promoting abstinence-based recovery.
Among the attendees was the renowned celebrity advocate Macklemore, who shared his personal struggles with substance use and recovery. Notably, members of Congress, policymakers, and organizers also attended the conference, indicating their increased attention and recognition of the importance of the recovery space.
Advocates are determined to establish people in recovery, as well as those who use drugs, as a viable constituency, actively pushing for political recognition. This push for political empowerment is exemplified by initiatives like the “Run For Recovery” training program, which seeks to empower people in recovery to run for office and become decision-makers in addressing the addiction crisis.
The conference inspired hope among advocates, who believe that the mobilization and momentum seen at the event will lead to significant changes and increased support for people in recovery throughout the country. By shedding light on the positive progress and advocating for necessary policies, advocates aim to ensure that individuals in recovery receive the recognition and support they need to continue their journey towards a healthier and more fulfilling life.
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