Don’t Punish Pain Rally to take place in Coloma
COLOMA, Mich. – On Wednesday, chronic pain patients will gather in cities nationwide to bring awareness to a different consequence of the opioid epidemic.
The Don’t Punish Pain Rally will take place at Barker Park in Coloma from 11 a.m to 1 p.m.
Organizers of the rally believe pain patients are casualties of the war on opioids.
They say millions of Americans with chronic illnesses no longer have access to the medications for the pain relief they need after the CDC implemented guidelines for prescribing opioids for chronic pain in 2016.
The CDC says prescription opioids can be an appropriate piece of management, but the new guideline works to improve the safety of prescribing and reduce opioid use disorder and overdose.
Jesse Ray is the organizer of the rally in Coloma; he has Complex Regional Pain Syndrome.
“Burning, throbbing, tight pain. It’s 24/7, and doesn’t let up,” Ray said referencing the pain he experiences each day.
He says pain patients are being tapered off medications and now struggle to get the relief they were once receiving from doctors.
"Due to CDC guidelines that were released in 2016, we feel like we’re being squeezed at every turn,” Ray said.
Ray said it’s important for chronic pain patients to let their voices be heard.
“Us chronic pain patients for so long have been silenced, and they’re losing their medications.”