Matt’s Mission working to end stigma of drug addiction, focus on treatment not punishment

Opioid Crisis

(WTNH) — During the pandemic, southern Connecticut-based Matt’s Mission, an organization working to end the stigma of drug addiction, saw an uptick in people requesting help.

Matt’s Mission was founded by Kathleen Dufficy, a mom who saw her son Matthew lose a 12-year battle with addiction in a drug-related accident.

In her daughter Kelly Barrett’s words, Dufficy took her grief and wanted to turn it into something meaningful and impactful.

Their message: that no one is immune to addiction. Their mission: end the stigma and shame. Their purpose: focus on treatment and not punishment.

Kelly Barrett, the president of Matt’s Mission, told us, “We want to focus on substance use and substance use disorders as a disease, not a criminal act. We want to raise awareness in that way and – you’re absolutely right – education is the way to do that.”

Matt’s Mission collaborates with Griswold Pride, a youth organization that focuses on preventing youth drug and alcohol use.

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