The purpose to reduce the stigma of addition can be found in the stereotype of the addicted people who are different than normal people and can be dangerous. As this problem grows fast and many people face with it, it is necessary to use the various approaches in order to reduce the stigma of addiction. Public stigma can be changed by using of such methods as protest, education and contact.
The approach of protest indicates the injustice of stigma and emphasizes an importance to stop thinking that addicted people do not need an attention and a special treatment. Educational and contact approaches help to indicate the problem and to develop the solutions.
One of the approaches used by the counselors is the therapeutic-community approach with cognitive-behavioral relapse-prevention models (Myers and Salt, p. 13-14).
Besides, all approaches consist of the collaborative planning which is assessment-based and convinces the clients to make the treatment more intensive. Moreover, the counselors use the harm-reduction approaches (Myers and Salt, p. 5) which include the methadone maintenance and such sharp and arguable method as the legalization of marijuana for medical purposes.
Although many people suppose that the individuals who have not personally experienced addiction cannot be the affective counselors, I think that such attitude is wrong. No matter if the counselor had experienced addiction or not, he/she can be absolutely acquainted with specific and all peculiarities of the disease due to the experience of his/her relatives, friends or just from a long practice and professional knowledge and skills.
It is natural for some people to demonstrate the special characteristics needed for the absolute understanding of the clients. Thereby, I disagree with a statement that those people who have not personally experienced addiction cannot achieve the good results as the professional counselors.
Myers, P. L., & Salt, N. R. (2007). Becoming an addictions counselor (2nd ed.). US: Jones and Bartlett Publishers, Inc.