Diversity and Inclusion Within Addiction Recovery

The conversation of diversity and inclusion usually pertains to professional or academic topics. What about the importance of diversity and inclusion when it comes to healthcare? More specifically, what about the importance of diversity and inclusion in mental healthcare and addiction treatment? This was not a topic of discussion for many years. Nowadays, the lines of communication around this topic are wide open, as they should be. Many may not realize how deterring non-inclusive treatment can be for people.

Many may now see the importance of seeing people for who they are, not seeing them for their illness. At the Lakehouse Recovery Center, that means creating a treatment plan that acknowledges and respects people’s beliefs, values, and identities. Addiction treatment is about the whole person. Only then can our clients achieve long-term sobriety successfully. The more inclusive treatment programs are, the more success they will have at helping people toward long-lasting recovery. 

Why Is Inclusivity Important in Addiction Treatment?

It is an unfortunate truth that many still experience discrimination based on race, gender, sexual orientation, or religion. There is still much work to be done to rid the world of such discrimination. 

Discrimination should never be present when it comes to healthcare, mental healthcare, and programs where people focus on optimizing their overall well-being. This holds true for addiction recovery. Addiction is a complex disorder that does not discriminate. It is an equal opportunity illness and all people should have equal access to receiving treatment.

Each person’s struggle with addiction is a unique experience. This is because no two people are the same. Although, people can have certain things in common with each other. These commonalities help connect one another, bond over similarities, and understand each other better. Addiction treatment generally allows individuals to share their experiences and struggles with other people who understand. 

At times it is helpful to share addiction struggles with people from similar backgrounds whether that be people of similar religious backgrounds, genders, ages, or races. Some treatment facilities may create programs focused on certain groups of people, whether those are faith-based programs, LGBTQ+ programs, or gender-specific programs. 

What happens when these programs are not geographically desirable or affordable? People need to know that they can feel confident in finding a treatment program that is close by, a good fit for their needs, and inclusive of them.

What Happens When Treatment Programs Are Not Inclusive?

Communities of people who are severely discriminated against may be more in need of addiction treatment and less likely to seek that treatment. Increased levels of discrimination lead to more psychological, emotional, and behavioral health issues. The constant toxicity of discrimination can cause severe stress to members of these communities, therefore, they may turn to substance use to cope. 

These individuals are less apt to seek treatment because of a fear of discrimination, stigma, or feeling like an outcast in a treatment program. These individuals do not receive the necessary treatment they deserve and continue a life of substance use, which can ultimately lead to a lifelong journey of other medical issues, or even death.

Fortunately, some do seek treatment despite their fears of experiencing discrimination. Once in an addiction treatment program, they may have difficulty opening up, making connections, and reaping the full benefits of treatment. People may feel like outsiders amongst their peers. That is because they can only bond over their struggle with addiction. 

If a program is not as inclusive as it could be, there may be little chance to bond over commonalities. Making connections during treatment is invaluable. These connections are meant to be pillars of support for each other after treatment and in recovery. Being able to talk and connect about things unrelated to addiction is essential. This can be difficult to do if the people within their treatment program have nothing in common with who they are as a whole person.

Finding a Home of Inclusion at the Lakehouse

Non-inclusivity makes it difficult for clinical professionals to help individuals reach their full potential due to a lack of insight or specific community resources. It is important to remember that clinicians are not treating the disorder, they are treating the person, and as such, need to be able to treat the person for who they are. The Lakehouse’s emphasis on individualized treatment, diverse curriculum, and focus on family engagement help clients find a home of inclusion at our facility.

Our centralized Los Angeles location allows the Lakehouse to provide integrative treatment services to people ages 18 and up of all ethnicities, religions, genders, and backgrounds. Our programs are designed to meet the clinical needs of each client. We believe in the importance of diversity and inclusion in an addiction treatment program, and we prioritize helping clients feel included by making their voices heard and empowering them to take control of their recovery.

Diversity and inclusion have become a topic of conversation across the world today. More than ever, people are determined to ensure that people of all backgrounds have equal opportunity in every aspect of life. Just as inclusivity is important in all areas of life, it is extremely important to prioritize it regarding healthcare and mental health. Many do not realize the dangers of a non-inclusive addiction treatment program. Unfortunately, non-inclusive programs prevent individuals suffering from addiction to seek the treatment needed to get their lives back. That is because people fear discrimination or are unable to make strong connections with peers. The Lakehouse offers a place of inclusivity by offering individualized treatment and a diversely well-rounded curriculum. If you are searching for a treatment facility that does not discriminate against race, religion, sexual orientation, or any background, call the Lakehouse at (866) 313-9982. We can help you on your path to recovery today.