USDA And Communities Fight Opioid Abuse

posted by Karla James - 

Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development Anne Hazlett today announced that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is partnering with rural communities in 22 states to support opportunities for opioid prevention, treatment and recovery. 

“With its impact on workforce, quality of life and the economic vitality of rural communities from Maine to California, the opioid epidemic is more than just a matter of public health – it is an issue of rural prosperity,” Hazlett said. “Under the leadership of President Trump, USDA is committed to being a strong partner to rural communities in planning and building local responses to this monumental challenge.”

USDA is investing $10.7 million in 85 projects in 22 states through the Community Facilities program. Below are some of the projects USDA is supporting:

  • In Newport, Ark., the White River Women’s Shelter is receiving a $150,000 grant to convert the former Jackson County Jail into a shelter for people recovering from opioid misuse. It has partnered with Families, Inc. to provide substance abuse counseling for all ages on an individual, couple, family and group basis. It will primarily serve residents in Jackson County.
  • In Roodhouse, Ill., the Jersey Community Hospital District is receiving a $150,000 grant to purchase and renovate a building that will house the rural health clinic. The facility will provide treatment, counseling, education and outreach to combat the opioid crisis in Roodhouse and White Hall. The Hospital Administration and Governing Board has made addressing substance misuse a priority. The proposed facility will help provide prevention, treatment and recovery for the area’s 4,300 residents.
  • In Wellsboro, Pa., Harbor Counseling is receiving a $130,600 loan and a $70,200 grant to renovate a facility that will be used for transitional housing for clients receiving substance misuse treatment. Harbor Counseling offers assessment, treatment and recovery for individuals and families dealing with substance misuse and mental health issues. It also provides community education and community support.

Hazlett announced that USDA is making investments today in Arkansas, Arizona, California, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, Vermont and Wisconsin.

In April 2017, President Donald J. Trump established the Interagency Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity to identify legislative, regulatory and policy changes that could promote agriculture and prosperity in rural communities. In January 2018, Secretary Perdue presented the Task Force’s findings to President Trump. These findings included 31 recommendations to align the federal government with state, local and tribal governments to take advantage of opportunities that exist in rural America. Increasing investments in rural infrastructure is a key recommendation of the task force.

To review the report click here

Information provided by USDA. 

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