“Our very first concern should be with those sufferers that we are still unable to reach… Newcomers are approaching us at the rate of tens of thousands yearly. They represent almost every belief and attitude imaginable. We have atheists and agnostics. We have people of nearly every race, culture and religion… How much and how often did we fail them?”
– Bill Wilson, General Service Conference, 1965
Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for A.A. membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. A.A. is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy; neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.
This particular group of Alcoholics Anonymous attempts to maintain a tradition of free expression, and conduct meetings where alcoholics may feel free to express any doubts or dis-beliefs they may have, and to share their own personal form of spiritual experience, their search for it, or their rejection of it, in a belief neutral space. We do not endorse or oppose any form of religion or atheism. Our only wish is to assure suffering alcoholics that they can find sobriety in A.A. without having to accept anyone else beliefs or having to deny their own.
The tradition of group autonomy assures that every AA group may conduct their meetings as they see fit, providing their actions do not affect other groups or AA as a whole. This gives AA a rich heritage of diversity and inclusiveness, and makes possible special purpose groups for Agnostics and Atheists, as well as special purpose groups such as : LGBTQ, YPAA, Women’s and Men’s meetings.