Jamie Lee Curtis Shines a Light on ‘Women in Prison Whose Lives Have Been Shattered’ by Addiction

Jamie Lee Curtis

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, you can get help by calling the Drug Addiction Hotline at 1-877-813-5721.

Jamie Lee Curtis’ sobriety journey is not only incredibly inspiring, but she also discussed a topic that needs to be talked about more when discussing addiction.

In a recent interview with the Morning Joe per People, the Everything Everywhere All at Once star shared that she recently celebrated 24 years of sobriety after fighting a decade-long opioid addiction, and how addiction needs to be talked about more.

Specifically, she talked about how “lucky” she was that she was able to get help, unlike many women who have been incarcerated for their addictions.

“I’m lucky. I didn’t make terrible decisions high or under the influence that then, for the rest of my life, I regret,” she said.

“There are women in prison whose lives have been shattered by drugs and alcohol, not because they were violent felons, not because they were horrible people, but because they were addicts.”

According to the Sentencing Project, “25 percent of women in prison have been convicted of a drug offense, compared to 12 percent of men in prison.” And if you want the bigger numbers, it’s reported that over 1.1 million Americans are arrested each year for drug-related charges.

The Sentencing Project also revealed that the number of female prisoners has been twice as high as that of men since 1980, with the rate of Black women reportedly being 1.6 times the rate of imprisonment for white women and Latinx women at 1.3 times the rate of white women.

So many people are affected by addiction, but there have been professionals trying to help combat incarcerated people’s addictions.

Quite a few jails and prisons have tried to help inmates battling addiction with AA meetings, educational programs, and nonresidential programs to help stop relapses after release, per Drug Rehab.

However, Brendan Saloner, PhD said, per John Hopkins, that there is still a lack of effective treatments, and that we need to change public opinion to see addiction as a medical crisis.

“There is a lot of work to be done in changing the attitudes around addiction for incarcerated people and toward people who have an opiate addiction,” Saloner said.

“We need to reframe the issue so that it’s understood to be a medical condition that can be treated, rather than a failing of a person’s character.”

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