Governor Baker campaign to reduce stigma of addiction

By Colin A. Young, State House News Service

Calling it a significant roadblock to seeking help and treatment for many people addicted to drugs, Gov. Charlie Baker on Wednesday launched a multimedia campaign aimed at removing the stigma of addiction.

The latest in a series of efforts from the governor to address the state’s ongoing opioid epidemic, the “State Without StigMA” campaign will include radio ads, Internet videos, billboards and social media posts highlighting stories of people in recovery.

“Addiction is not a choice, addiction is a disease,” Baker said at a Statehouse kickoff event, where he was joined by dozens of people in recovery. “It’s a disease that’s no different than diabetes or heart disease or congestive heart failure. And just as with these illnesses, those who suffer from them need our support, our understanding and our compassion.”

The Pittsfield-based Brien Center applauded Baker’s approach to eliminate the “shame and secrecy” that surrounds the opioid crisis in the commonwealth.

“Talking openly with each other about addiction is the best way to break down misconceptions and promote recovery and healthy communities,” said the agency’s CEO Christine Macbeth.

The Brien Center is the Berkshires’ primary community-based behavioral health provider, which works to facilitate a better understanding about how mental health and addiction affects everyone, and ensure those affected get the help they need, according to Macbeth.

»Read the full article at berkshireeagle.com


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