The Governor's Commission on Alcohol and Other Drugs voted today on how to spend an unused $3.8 million dollars of state funding from this fiscal year.
The commission voted to support substance abuse programs, as well as prevention and workforce programs.
One million dollars will go towards transitional living programs in the state.
These type of programs typically last six months, and provide housing and clinical services for people who are often post-residential treatment but needs a safe place to live to get longer term support.
"What we're trying to do is provide more stability because there's a lot of gaps around that in the state,” said Stephanie Savard, chief operating officer of Families In Transition – New Horizons.
She says this money is a way to help facilities expand the number of beds they have.
"It could be to do renovations if I have a third floor that I need to renovate and put beds there. It may be to help them if they’ve purchased a facility renovate that facility to become a transitional living program,” Savard said. “It's literally infrastructure money.”
Facilities would be able to apply for some of the one million dollars once a request for proposals becomes open.
Savard says having transitional housing is important for people who are in recovery because they are rebuilding their community.
“The community you had before probably wasn’t safe because it was around the drug and alcohol environment,” she said. “You’re really redefining your life, and transitional living allows you do that for those six months. Rebuild yourself, connection to employment or education, but more importantly to a peer support system.”
Additional funds went to supporting syringe services in the state and the recovery friendly workplace initiative, and supporting the expansion and development of Recovery Community Organizations in underserved areas in the state.
Five hundred thousand dollars would go to hospitals to integrate identification and treatment services for patients who come in for something that is not primarily substance use disorder, but the patient demonstrates signs of it