COLORADO SPRINGS – Several dozen people attended a “Community Listening Forum” Wednesday night at Library 21C to hear stories of addiction, treatment, and recovery from drugs and alcohol. Hosted by the Pikes Peak Library District, the event gave recovering addicts and family members of loved ones who are or have been addicted the chance to describe their experiences through every step of the process from addiction to sobriety.
The testimonials were directed at a panel comprised city, county, and state elected leaders, police, and school counselors. A wide array of service providers were also on-hand to provide resources and outlets for attendees currently working through recovery or family members with loved ones struggling with addiction.
Having a robust dialogue about the root causes, real-life impacts, and wide-ranging consequences of substance use and addiction is key to fostering an environment that encourages identification of problematic consumption, treatment options, and recovery support, according to Cathy Plush, Executive Director of Springs Recovery Connection. “It’s about removing the stigma that’s so often associated with addiction, and the more we talk about it as a community, and the more that people who are in recovery speak up and speak out, the more people are encouraged to come forward and say, ‘Hey, I need help,'” Plush said.