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Chronic pain patients hold ‘Don’t Punish Pain’ rally at Arkansas Capitol


Organizers of the “Don’t Punish Pain” rally are looking to make their voices heard to show, what they say, is the other side of the opioid crisis.

It’s the collective cry of the roughly 20 or so people at standing in front of the state capitol.

“We are legitimate chronic pain patients that need our medicine to function,” Elisa Furr, a singer and chronic pain patient, said.

These chronic pain patients are holding a rally in Little Rock to advocate for more specific legislature regarding medication dosage.

We reported back in July about the growing frustrations among people who need opioid medication but can’t get the dosage they were once allowed to get because of stricter regulations.

“We’re not addicts” Lachelle Hughes, a chronic pain patient, said, “We’re pain patients.”

Lachelle Hughes is the coordinator of Tuesday’s rally. She said she has numerous medical problems, such as fibromyalgia, that require her to use a wheelchair.

“I can’t even walk or do things at home that normal people might be able to do without taking pain meds,” she said.

And among this crowd, she’s not alone.

“I’ve consulted three surgeons and the last surgeon that I consulted told me it’s not a question of if I lose my ability to walk, but when,” Heather Pomplun, a chronic pain patient, said.

Pomplun is at the rally to stand with her fellow chronic pain patients. They said they aren’t disputing the current opioid crisis, but feel they’re being victimized because of it.

“It is a shame,” Pomplun said, “There is a problem with drugs on the street. However, we are not the problem but we are being punished like criminals.”

The rally at the capitol lasted about two hours and featured numerous speakers sharing the problems they’ve faced since these new regulations were put in place.



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