The number of people affected by drug and alcohol use disorders is at a crisis-level throughout the United States.  What is most troubling is that many of these people are not receiving the help they need to beat these addictions.

Gov. Blanco has declared September as National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month for the State of Louisiana. The highlight of the Recovery Month activities will be Sober Jam 2004.  The all-day family event, to be held September 18 at Marconi Meadows in New Orleans’ City Park, will be a celebration of recovery from addiction.  Attendees will be treated to live music, the best of Louisiana cuisine, Starbucks coffee, a health and information fair, and special activities just for children. 

The Department of Health and Hospitals--Office for Addictive Disorders, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the Foundation, will also use the month to promote public awareness about alcohol and drug use disorders and the availability and effectiveness of treatment.  The theme for this year’s Recovery Month is “Join the Voices for Recovery . . . Now!”

“During Recovery Month, we want to emphasize that treatment works and that recovery is possible,” said Michael Duffy, assistant secretary for DHH’s Office for Addictive Orders.  “We are honored to be a part of hosting the celebration of recovery in New Orleans this year and hope to see thousands of folks celebrating recovery.”

In 2002, slightly more than 2.7 percent of Louisianians aged 12 years or older needed but did not receive treatment for drug addiction.  And around 7.3 percent of this age group did not receive the treatment they needed for alcohol abuse.

The goal of Recovery Month is to let those in the community know that alcohol and drug use disorders are treatable public health challenges.  To meet this goal, communities must work together to end the stigma associated with addiction.

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