On June 2, a thousand plus addiction recovery advocates gathered on the lawn of the state capital building in Lansing, Michigan. Sanford House was there. The rally, Unite to Face Addiction Michigan (UFAM), was established to alert lawmakers about the unique needs of the 23 million people in recovery in the United States, raise awareness and eliminate the stigma of addiction.
Umbrella organization, Faces and Voices of Recovery, says in its Mission Statement, “Faces and Voices of Recovery Is dedicated to organizing and mobilizing the over 23 million Americans in recovery from addiction to alcohol and other drugs, our families, friends and allies into recovery community organizations and networks, to promote the right and resources to recover through advocacy, education and demonstrating the power and proof of long-term recovery.”
Unite to Face Addiction Michigan brought together people from all walks of the recovery world: treatment centers; Recovery Allies; people in recovery; addiction professionals; law makers; and specialty groups (for example: Trails to Triumph from Crossing Over Ministry: a faith based biker group).
Speakers included Craig DeRoche, former Michigan Speaker of the House and person in long term recovery; Judge Jodi Debbrecht Switalksi, a Senior Advisor at the Stuntman Group and advocate on addiction, who encouraged the crowd to get out and “do something” in order to promote change; and rally organizer Scott Masi.