A MESSAGE FROM NARCOTICS ANONYMOUS WORLD BOARD:
We continue to receive inquiries and questions about the present situation concerning the coronavirus (COVID-19). On April 1st, we posted a statement suggesting groups may want to discuss contingencies for the possibility that they are unable to meet face-to-face for some period. That has become the reality for many NA groups around the world.
Many groups have moved to meeting online or via phone. It is not our role to advise groups how to respond to the crisis, but we have put together a Virtual Meetings page where you can find lists of online and phone meetings as well as resources for groups that are meeting online as well as those that are considering resuming in-person or hybrid meetings. The page is the first link in the drop-down menu under the FOR MEMBERS tab of the website. If you are using a mobile device, click the SERVICES button, and you’ll see it’s the first link on that page. You can also find it by entering www.na.org/virtual in your web browser.
Don’t forget that booklets, IPs, and reading cards are available in 55 languages online, and NA’s books are available in e-format in English (as well as Arabic, Hungarian, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish Basic Texts) from the links on www.na.org/elit.
Our Chatsworth office is not open to the public yet, but we are processing orders and responding to communications as resources permit. WSO Canada, WSO India, and WSO Europe are processing orders as they can get to them. All locations of NAWS are still physically closed. We are working on a plan to reopen when it is safe for our customers and staff to do so.
The pandemic has thrust World Services into a financial crisis. We have had to furlough more than half of the staff at our Chatsworth office. Nonetheless, we are providing a wide range of services during this time. We encourage you to subscribe to NAWS News for regular updates on our work: www.na.org/subscribe.
We encourage groups that are meeting in person to discuss options to provide safe environments for those who attend your meetings. For instance, groups may want to encourage members to wear masks and maintain social distancing. Groups may want to discontinue refreshments and also consider alternatives to “circling up” at the end of the meeting.
Your national or local public health agencies may have specific guidance regarding meetings and gatherings. We are aware of the guidelines and recommendations provided by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), https://www.cdc.gov and there are similar agencies in countries outside of the USA. The World Health Organization (WHO) may also be a resource https://www.who.int.
Many events and meetings have been affected by mandated closures due to public health orders. If you are seeking information about specific local NA events or meetings, the best source of information is the service committee responsible for hosting that event or meeting, or the local NA website. On our Find a Meeting webpage, local websites are listed in the window on the top left side of the page: www.na.org/meetingsearch.
We have been encouraged by the efforts that NA members and groups are taking to ensure the message is carried no matter what. Our support for one another continues to be a source of hope and optimism even with all that we are facing.
Thank you for all you do for NA. Please make sure you follow the health advice offered by your local public health authorities. We hope that everyone will continue to be safe during these difficult times!
(NA World Services, 11 November 2020)