Destigmatization and Awareness Campaign

People First

Stigma prevents people from accepting help, seeking treatment, and maintaining sobriety.  End Mass Overdose is working to reframe substance abuse. Describing people with substance use disorders as junkies, druggies, addicts, and users who are not strong enough to "get clean" is ineffective.  


Labeling increased access to Narcan (naloxone) as a free pass that perpetuates the problem is non-factual and clinically inaccurate.  The debate if Narcan is free for addicts because addiction is a "disease," then why isn't insulin free for diabetics is unproductive.  Narcan is not a treatment for addiction.  When 911 is called, addicts do not receive free treatment, they are revived with a medication that restores respiration.  Similarly, when 911 is called for a person with high blood  pressure in cardiac arrest, they do not receive free treatment, they are revived with an AED that restores normal rhythm to the heart.  Narcan is to overdose what an AED is to cardiac arrest.  Both may temporarily revive, but neither will treat the underlying condition.  


Stigma will not solve the problem.  It only creates a greater divide.  Change your perspective. People first

State Without StigMA


Opioids and prescription drugs are our greatest public health threat.  The opioid epidmic kills four people each day in the Commonwealth.  


YOU can help. By changing the way we think, talk about, and treat people with addiction we can move forward together.  If you think this is not impacting your family, then it is certainly impacting the families of your coworkers and children's friends, neighbors, and fellow community members.  


Get the facts and show your support us as make Massachusetts a #StateWithoutStigMA.  End Mass Overdose, Inc. supports the Massachusetts State Governmnent's State Without Stigma Campagin.   


FOR HELP: 1-800-327-5050 (tty: 1-800-2370)


Click to join the campaign, take the pledge, or nominate a community champion

Stories of Stigma 


The fear of being fired from a job, losing custody of children, and disappointing family members is overwhelming. Also, the label of being in "recovery" or a "recovering addict" causes significant fear and embarrassment because people are judged as a bad parent, employee, student, or friend.  Many substance users keep their chronic medical condition a secret because they fear that their diagnosis will prevent them from obtaining a good job or returning to school.  Also, many parents, spouses, and loved ones of substance users experience extreme shame and guilt as outsiders judge them for being enablers or poor family members.  Listen to the stories below to understand the negative consequences of being labeled and shunned by society.



  • Grey Facebook Icon
  • Grey Twitter Icon
  • Grey Instagram Icon
  • Grey LinkedIn Icon

Support Our Mission