Actor Danny Trejo wants people struggling with addiction to know that they have the willpower to stay sober. In a new public service announcement for Los Angeles-based nonprofit treatment center CRI-Help, Trejo, who is 52 years sober himself, encourages those suffering to stop running from their problems.
“From the first time I used, I thought it was a party—more booze, more dope, just more,” Trejo says at the start of the PSA. “Then, I made a decision. I wanted off this ride, out of this cage. I wanted my life back.”
The PSA is part of CRI-Help’s “Fight” campaign, marking the 50th anniversary of the organization. COO Brandon Fernandez told The Hollywood Reporter that CRI-Help always sees a rise in admissions during the holiday season.
“The physical and emotional triggers often imbued in this time of year can lead to increases in drug and alcohol consumption,” Fernandez says. “We want people to know that we are here to help.”
Best known for his tough-guy roles in movies like Machete, From Dusk Till Dawn and Desperado, Trejo’s journey from prison to one of the most prolific actors working in Hollywood today has been an inspiring one. Much of it was documented earlier this year in the film Inmate #1: The Rise of Danny Trejo.
Today, Trejo continues to work as a drug counselor for many people who are fighting the disease of addiction. “You don’t have to suffer anymore,” Trejo continues in the PSA. “There is hope. If it can happen for me, it can happen for you.”