King County Councilmembers Reagan Dunn and Dave Upthegrove were joined by their fellow councilmembers in proclaiming September as Behavioral Health Recovery Month in King County.
StoryKing County Councilmembers Reagan Dunn and Dave Upthegrove were joined by their fellow councilmembers Tuesday in proclaiming September as Behavioral Health Recovery Month in King County.
Recovery Month is an observance, which occurs every September, to raise awareness of the issue of mental health and substance use disorders. It also promotes and supports the well-being of those seeking recovery through treatment and recovery practices and celebrates the dedication of community members across the nation who support those on this hard-fought path.
“We must understand the recovery process, and support those who seek it in their individual journey,” Dunn said. “It is critical that we acknowledge mental health and substance use disorder as a healthcare issue and destigmatize these conditions. People need to know it’s okay to ask for help and seek recovery.”
The tagline of Recovery Month is “Every Person, Every Family, Every Community”—a reminder that no one is alone on their journey—and that we are all in this together.
“We all need to help each other if we want to overcome the challenges posed by mental health issues and substance abuse disorders,” said Councilmember Dave Upthegrove. “Reach out a hand when you see someone struggling rather than turning away. Ask how you can help when there are signs that a family member is suffering rather than waiting for them to come to you. Open your arms to a friend when they come to you in pain rather than assuming they are strong enough to deal with their problems alone. Recovery requires all of us to step up.”
This year, David Coffey, Executive Director of Recovery Café, accepted this year’s proclamation. “I want to thank King County for recognizing the important truth that people can and do recover. In fact, is the expected thing,” Coffey said. “More than 22 million Americans are in recovery and we should celebrate that. For those precious people who are still struggling it’s important to know there is hope!”
Recovery Month began in 1989 as Treatment Works! Month, which honored the work of substance use treatment professionals in the field. It then expanded into National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month in 1998, when it started celebrating the accomplishment of individuals in recovery. The observance evolved once again in 2011 to become National Recovery Month and include mental illness.