By Jeannie Colter
During the Labor Day Weekend, former substance abusers gathered for affirmation and to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Narcotics Anonymous. This group, which took its inspiration from Alcoholics Anonymous, supports people in recovery from narcotics addiction. Although there was some trepidation about such a gathering, we believe that the city of Philadelphia was understanding of the need to celebrate milestones reached by recovering addicts as individuals and for Narcotics Anonymous as a group. The group’s assistant executive director told Philly.com that this is a well-behaved group who will give the city an economic boost by purchasing lots of coffee while they’re in town.
Much like any other convention, there will be informative panels. One issue that is on the minds of those who are in recovery and on the minds of the professionals who work in the field is the increase in narcotics use among young people. But discussing the nationwide increase in narcotics use is not the only reason for the gathering, in fact,
“As prescription drug abuse reaches epidemic levels, especially among young people, the recovering addicts began arriving Thursday to celebrate their sobriety and show the public that drug habits can be kicked and former users can go on to lead productive and happy lives.”
There were plans for a countdown where people will get to stand up with others who have been sober as long as they have—starting with those who have been clean for 50 years or more down to those that have been clean for a week. Those who have not abused narcotics in a week or less will get a copy the basic Narcotics Anonymous text as a way to encourage them to continue.
The Unity Day Call will be a chance to connect with members in other countries and those in prison—those who are attending gatherings around the world or behind bars will call in with greetings.