Judy Darcy, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, issued the following statement regarding the proclamation of Recovery Week in British Columbia, Sept. 3-9, 2017:
“This week in communities throughout B.C., people in recovery from addiction have joined with family members, friends and supporters to build awareness and challenge stigma around addictions. They have also gathered to reinforce the message that recovery saves lives.
“On September 9th, I will have the opportunity to participate in a Recovery Day event in my own constituency of New Westminster, where I will be hearing firsthand inspiring and courageous stories from people about their road to recovery.
“Never before has recovery been so important to British Columbians. We continue to battle the most significant public health crisis in decades with illegal drug overdose deaths continuing to climb due to a contaminated supply.
“Saving lives is crucial. And that means meeting people where they are now. There are many pathways to hope, and what works for some won’t work for others. Whether that path involves abstinence or harm reduction, sobriety or maintenance, people need to be alive in order to begin a journey of recovery.
“I encourage all British Columbians to offer support and encouragement to our loved ones, neighbours and work colleagues who are struggling with addiction. Talk to them, listen to them, and urge them to reach out and not to suffer in silence. There is no shame in asking for help. We stand in solidarity to challenge any form of stigma attached to mental health and addictions that prevent a person from getting the help they desperately need.
“As government, we need to make sure that help is there when people need it. That’s why we have set an ambitious goal, working across government, to build a seamless network of services – an accessible system – where if you ask once, you get help fast.”