News About Addiction, Recovery and Advocacy

If you want to be in the know about what’s going on at our organization, you’ve come to the right place. Be sure to check back regularly to get our latest news updates.

Congratulations To The First Five Organizations To Receive CAPRSS Accreditation!

February 25, 2014
Five organizations have received full accreditation status for their peer recovery support services programs from the Council on Accreditation of Peer Recovery Support Services (CAPRSS). In its first-ever round of awards, CAPRSS accredited the Association of Persons Affected by Addiction (Dallas, TX); McShin Foundation (Richmond, VA); Minnesota Recovery Connection (Minneapolis, MN); PRO-ACT, a program of the Southeast Council of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia, PA); and Stairway to Recovery, a program of Latino Health Institute (Brockton, MA). We’re proud to have achieved this important milestone in awarding these first-ever accreditations and are thrilled to be at this stage after nearly three years of development work. We are at this point because of the involvement and engagement of recovery community leaders, as well as stakeholders and allies, across the country. In January 2014, CAPRSS began fulltime operations when Elizabeth Burden was hired as its chief executive officer. CAPRSS will begin accepting applications for its next round of accreditation in early April from any organization or program providing PRSS that support addiction recovery. CAPRSS is the only accrediting body in the US for recovery community organizations and other organizations offering addiction-related peer recovery support services (PRSS). CAPRSS’s mission is to identify and support excellence in the delivery of peer recovery support services. CAPRSS’ asset-based accreditation™ program helps emerging and established PRSS programs to build capacity and improves PRSS program performance by setting and measuring the achievement of standards. To find out more about CAPRSS and its accreditation process, please visit the website at, where you can sign up to recieve regular updates and get involved in this exciting recovery enterprise.

The New Face of Faces & Voices of Recovery

February 17, 2014

We’re excited to launch this amazing new website where you can learn, connect & take action. I’m proud to serve as Faces & Voices board chair and work with recovery advocates from across the country to advance our recovery agenda. I encourage you to find out more about our board and our regional representatives and share your recovery story, events and trainings with our growing constituency.

As a woman in long term recovery, I know that recovery is working for me and my family. I am one of the 23 million Americans who are standing up, speaking out and giving back so that others can get the help they need to live new lives in recovery. Faces & Voices of Recovery believes that everyone has a right to recover. This chart shows the conditions that will make that possible and that we’re excited to work with you to achieve:

Last year we collaborated with our partners to launch a new campaign, MANYFACES1VOICE.ORG to advance the recovery movement. Faces & Voices 2014 Rally for Recovery! hub event will be in Louisville, KY on September20th in partnership with People Advocating Recovery, Kentucky’s statewide recovery community organization. Stay tuned for much ahead in the coming year.

I want to thank our dedicated board and staff and the tens of thousands of people who have come together in recovery community organizations across the nation and the world. Whether behind the scenes or on the front line, thank you for joining us in making every recovery voice count.

Dona Dmitrovic

Council on Accreditation of Peer Recovery Support Services LLC Established to Accredit Organizations and Programs Providing Peer Recovery Support Services

June 22, 2013

(Washington, DC, July 22, 2013) – Faces & Voices of Recovery has established the Council on Accreditation of Peer Recovery Support Services (CAPRSS) LLC, the next step in implementing a system to accredit recovery community organizations and programs as health care service providers.

“We are excited about this important step that will build on the successes of the growing network of recovery community organizations across the US,” said Faces & Voices Director of Programs Tom Hill. “Implementation of the Wellstone/Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act and the Affordable Care Act, combined with a new focus on recovery and health management, have positioned these organizations and programs to step into new roles in their communities.”

Under CAPRSS, organizations seeking accreditation will be required to meet a set of standards, established criteria, and measured outcomes, organized according to four functional areas and accompanying domains. Applicants will be evaluated on the extent to which they can demonstrate their ability to meet the specific standards on a tiered continuum ranging from full accreditation to provisional and nonaccreditation status. Assistance for applicants will be available to help organizations and programs build capacity and meet accreditation requirements.

“CAPRSS is the first-ever accrediting body that is designed specifically for recovery community organizations and peer programs in allied organizations offering peer services. CAPRSS accreditation status will allow them to take on a level of accountability that can guarantee the highest level of quality in services, wherever they are delivered – in community or off-site service settings, such as criminal justice, clinical treament, or primary care,” said Hill.

A full set of standards and key indicator criteria have been developed Site visits in five
locations are underway, to be completed by the end of October, 2013. The site visits are
planned as pilots to further assess the standards, develop onsite protocols, and test
measurement metrics and final evaluations. After the site visits, the standards and
measures, site visit protocols and peer review manuals will be finalized, along with an
online application and learning platform. The CAPRSS web site (
provides additional information and a place to register for updates and requests to
participate in the accreditation process.

Faces & Voices of Recovery has been developing CAPRSS since January 2011. A 25-
member Advisory Council representing public and private sector payers, researchers, and
peer recovery support service providers has guided its effort. Two consultants, Elizabeth
Burden and Thomas Zastowny, PhD., have brought organizational, design, and technical
expertise and Tom Hill, Faces & Voices Director of Programs, has managed the overall
project. CAPRSS development has been supported by the Health Foundation of Greater
Cincinnati, the federal government’s Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services
Administration (SAMHSA) and Faces & Voices of Recovery members.

About Faces & Voices of Recovery
Faces & Voices of Recovery is a national nonprofit organization working to mobilize,
organize and rally the 23 million Americans in long-term recovery from addiction to
alcohol and other drugs, their families, friends and allies in a campaign to end
discrimination; broaden social understanding; and achieve a just response to addiction as
a public health crisis. For more information, please visit:


April 25, 2013

Study highlights the critical need for removal of discriminatory barriers to people with addiction and fighting for recovery – costing nation $343 Billion a year

(Washington, DC, April 25, 2013) – The results from the first nationwide survey of persons in recovery from addiction to alcohol and other drugs released today by Faces & Voices of Recovery documents the heavy costs of addiction to the individual and the nation and for the first time, measures and quantifies the effects of recovery over time. During their active addiction, 50 percent of respondents had been fired or suspended once or more from jobs, 50 percent had been arrested at least once and a third had been incarcerated at least once, contributing to a total societal cost of $343 billion to our nation annually.*

There are over 23 million Americans in recovery from addiction in the US. The dramatic improvements associated with recovery affected all areas of life including a ten-fold decrease in involvement with the criminal justice system and use of costly emergency room departments and a 50 percent increase in participation in family activities and in paying taxes compared with their lives in active addiction. Yet, discriminatory practices in housing, employment, health insurance coverage and elsewhere remain tremendous barriers to recovery.

“It’s time to take action to end discrimination facing people in or seeking recovery from addiction. As this survey from Faces & Voices documents, recovery benefits everyone,” said former Congressman Patrick Kennedy.

“This survey documents, for the first time ever, that investing in recovery makes sense. When we get the help and support that we need, we are employed, pay bills and taxes, vote, volunteer in our communities and take care of our health and families,” said Faces & Voices board chair Dona Dmitrovic. “We call on states and the Congress to reform drug policy by addressing and removing discriminatory barriers; ensuring access to and financing for a full range of health care and other services to support Americans in initiating and sustaining their recovery, and to invest in research to identify quality and cost-effective recovery-promoting policies and practices.”

While the many costs of active addiction are well documented, very little is known about the changes in key life areas as a function of entering and sustaining recovery, or when they occur. The survey measures and quantifies the recovery experience over time – Less than 3 years; 3 to 10 years; and 10 years and more.

“These research findings are a call to action to policy makers and the public,” said Dmitrovic. “Life keeps getting better as recovery progresses.”


Involvement in illegal acts and involvement with the criminal justice system (e.g., arrests, incarceration, DWIs) decreases by about ten-fold
Steady employment in addiction recovery increases by over 50% greater relative to active addiction
Frequent use of costly Emergency Room departments decreases ten-fold
Paying bills on time and paying back personal debt doubles
Planning for the future (e.g., saving for retirement) increases nearly three-fold
Involvement in domestic violence (as victim or perpetrator) decreases dramatically
Participation in family activities increases by 50%
Volunteering in the community increases nearly three-fold compared to in active addiction
Voting increases significantly
Reports of untreated emotional/mental health problems decrease over four-fold
Twice as many participants further their education or training than in active addiction

The percentage of people owing back taxes decreases as recovery gets longer while a greater number of people in longer recovery report paying taxes, having good credit, making financial plans for the future and paying back debts.
Civic involvement increases dramatically as recovery progresses in such areas as voting and volunteering in the community
People increasingly engage in healthy behaviors such as taking care of their health, having a healthy diet, getting regular exercise and dental checkups, as recovery progresses
As recovery duration increases, a greater number of people go back to school or get additional job training
Rates of steady employment increase gradually as recovery duration increases
More and more people start their own business as recovery duration increases
Participation in family activities increases from 68% to 95%.

The online survey was developed, conducted and analyzed in collaboration with Alexandre Laudet, Ph.D., Director of the Center for the Study of Addictions and Recovery at the National Development and Research Institutes, Inc. It was conducted between November 1 and December 31, 2012 and collected information on 3,228 participants’ sociodemographics, physical/mental health, substance use, and recovery history, and 44 items representing experiences and indices of functioning in work, finances, legal, family, social and citizenship domains.

*Substance Abuse Prevention Dollars and Cents: A Cost-Benefit Analysis, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Faces & Voices of Recovery is organizing the over 23 million Americans in recovery from addiction to alcohol and other drugs, their families, friends and allies in a campaign to end discrimination; broaden social understanding; and achieve a just response to addiction as a public health crisis.