Governor Kathy Hochul announced this week that the state’s Opioid Settlement Fund is offering $2.2 million to help connect vulnerable New Yorkers with addiction services and other critical supports. The “Connections to Care” initiative, administered by the state Office of Addiction Services and Supports, aims to provide up to 11 grants to eligible providers to connect individuals in high-need and underserved populations to the services that support long-term substance use disorder recovery and overall well-being.
“This funding will help bridge the gap between those in our most vulnerable and marginalized populations and the lifesaving services that can help them overcome addiction,” said Governor Hochul.
The initiative will provide up to 11 awards of $200,000 to support harm reduction, physical and behavioral health services, along with other supports, including connections to transportation, supportive housing programs, and legal services. Services through this initiative may be provided by peers, case managers, or clinical staff, either through telehealth or in person.
The funding is intended to support target populations such as pregnant or postpartum women, transitional youth, individuals aged 55 or older, and those diagnosed with or suspected of having a traumatic brain injury or a developmental disability. The services are also aimed at assisting individuals returning to the community from incarceration and those transitioning from stabilization and withdrawal services or inpatient rehabilitation services.
The state will receive over $2 billion through various settlement agreements with opioid manufacturers and pharmaceutical companies that were secured by Attorney General Letitia James. A portion of the funding from these settlements will go directly to municipalities, with the remainder deposited into a dedicated fund to support prevention, treatment, harm reduction, and recovery efforts to address the ongoing opioid epidemic.
Governor Hochul was a member of the New York State Heroin and Opioid Task Force, which in 2016, recommended new, non-traditional services, including recovery centers, youth clubhouses, expanded peer services, and open access centers. These services have since been established in numerous communities around the state and have helped people in need access care closer to where they live.
New Yorkers struggling with addiction or whose loved ones are struggling can find help by calling the state’s toll-free, 24-hour, 7-day-a-week HOPEline at 1-877-8-HOPENY (1-877-846-7369) or by texting HOPENY (Short Code 467369). The NYS OASAS Treatment Availability Dashboard at FindAddictionTreatment.ny.gov or through the OASAS website can also provide information on available addiction treatment.
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