New Approach to Alcohol Problems Launched by the HAMS Harm Reduction Network

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The newly launched HAMS Harm Reduction Program offers new hope to people with alcohol problems. HAMS offers a harm reduction approach to alcohol use, providing tools, information and support to help people achieve goals of safer drinking, reduced drinking or quitting drinking altogether.

Kenneth Anderson

it is possible to have a far greater positive impact on society by getting a large number of people to make small positive changes than by getting only a few people to make big changes.

The HAMS Harm Reduction Network announces the availability of its revolutionary new harm reduction approach designed to offer hope to people with alcohol problems. HAMS is a free-of-charge, lay-led support group for people who wish to reduce the harm in their lives related to their use of alcohol.

Traditional approaches to alcohol problems based on AA and the 12-step model, which emphasize total abstinence from alcohol as the only acceptable outcome, have very low success rates--it is estimated that anywhere from 60 to 95 percent of clients who enter such programs either drop out or otherwise fail to maintain abstinence from alcohol. By way of contrast, simple and sane harm reduction approaches ranging from using seatbelts in automobiles to using clean needles for injection drug users save countless lives every day of the week.

HAMS stands for Harm reduction, Alcohol Abstinence, Moderation, and Support. The group supports individuals in goals of safer drinking, reduced drinking or quitting altogether. HAMS finds that individuals are most successful with goals they have chosen for themselves; therefore, HAMS never seeks to assign a drinking goal to a HAMS member. HAMS provides tools, information and support to help people achieve goals of safer drinking, reduced drinking or quitting.

"Harm reduction works on the premise that it is easier to get people to make small changes than to get them to make big changes. Because of this it is possible to have a far greater positive impact on society by getting a large number of people to make small positive changes than by getting only a few people to make big changes. It is easier and far more effective to get people to use seat belts than to eliminate the automobile and driving entirely. It is easier and far more effective to get people to have safe sex than to attempt to make people stop having sex entirely. And it is easier and far more effective to teach people how to plan their drinking and drink safely than to try and eliminate recreational intoxication entirely. Prohibition and coerced abstinence do not work. Harm reduction does," says HAMS founder Kenneth Anderson.

If you or a loved one has a problem with excessive or unsafe alcohol use, please visit the HAMS Web site http://hamsnetwork.org for information and support in dealing with this problem. Although HAMS live support groups are currently available only in New York City, HAMS online support groups are available worldwide and have participants in Ireland, Syria, Australia and Canada, as well as all over the United States.

"HAMS fills a giant gap left by other programs by offering a realistic and pragmatic program that addresses the needs of people who are either unwilling or unable to abstain from alcohol. Harm reduction saves lives when abstinence-only programs fail," Anderson says.

To support the work of HAMS in reducing harmful drinking, please donate to the group's cause. For more information about HAMS and its harm reduction approach to alcohol abuse, visit http://hamsnetwork.org.

Contact:
Kenneth Anderson
347-678-5671

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