Apr 15, 2019
Blog Post: From Crisis to a Career
Kentucky leads the way in workforce development for substance-use patients
At the NADO-DDAA Annual Conference held in Virginia in March, state leaders discussed how they are combatting opioid addiction, abuse and overdose deaths in the Appalachian region. West Virginia’s Drug Free Moms and Babies Project provides integrated prevention and treatment support to pregnant women with substance use disorders. In Tennessee, First Tennessee Development District is building alliances between educators, clinicians, and community, church and faith leaders to solve the problem.
Kentucky approaches the opioid epidemic as an economic and workforce issue rather than a public health concern. In a 2017 report, the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce found that the opioid epidemic and incarceration due to drug charges were leading factors in the state’s low workforce participation rate. Since then, it has focused on advancing policies that get people on the path to recovery and back into the workforce.
While there is evidence (for example, read this study published by NBER) supporting that unemployment is a contributing factor to increased demand for opioids, the impact of opioids on labor force participation is still emerging. According to research presented by Professor Michael Betz from the Ohio State University at the conference, the counties in Ohio that had lower labor participation rate in 2010, largely due to a decline in manufacturing employment, had higher overdose rates in 2015, suggesting a strong relationship between the local labor market conditions and the rise of opioid overdose deaths.
Speaking at the conference, Tim Robinson, CEO of Addiction Recovery Care in Kentucky, urged states to adopt a whole-person approach which starts with intervening with treatment, investing in someone's economic future by providing access to transitional housing, vocational rehabilitation, workforce development, and inspiring them that there is hope to go from crisis to a career.
Mr. Robinson’s organization, Addiction Recovery Care, runs 30 treatment centers and treats 500 people in residential and 500 people in outpatient facilities across 12 counties in Kentucky. It has an internship program which guarantees a job to everyone who completes the treatment. Additionally, they have partnered with the Kentucky Workforce Board and with Sullivan University, expanding the internship into a 6-month career academy that lets candidates to earn certifications and college credits.
After starting the career academy, Mr. Robinson reported that the center saw a 30% increase in clients who chose to continue medical treatment beyond detox and residential care. More than 85% of their 6-month career academy graduates are sober, working full time, paying taxes and transitioning off public assistance. Recently, Addiction Recovery Care opened a new venture: Second Chance Auto Mechanics Shop in Louisa employs people who are in recovery, providing a second chance for patients to rebuild their career.
Written by Anuradha Dhar, Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness (CREC)
Feb 04, 2018
7th Annual Professional Development Seminar
July 30-31, 2019
The Development District Association of Appalachia (DDAA) invite YOU to take time to improve yourself and your organization at the Annual Professional Development Seminar, in Charleston, WV. Whether you want to attain skills and knowledge for personal development or career advancement, join us for real-world executive and employee development sessions, networking and more in Charleston, WV. The presentations are targeted for Executive Directors, Managers, Fiscal Managers, Officers, IT Managers and Staff.
Charleston Marriott Town Center
200 Lee St E
Charleston, WV 25301
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION.
Jan 16, 2018
DDAA Annual Conference Registration Now Open
The DDAA Annual Conference will be held in conjunction with the NADO Washington Conference. Whereas in previous years there were two separate registrations for two conferences, this year there is only a single registration process for a combined conference. In other words, if in past years you registered separately for each conference, this year you only need to complete a single registration process and pay a single registration fee. The conference is set to begin with the Opening Reception at 5:30 p.m. on Sun., March 17 and end with the Closing Plenary at 11:00 am on Wed., March 20 at the Crystal Gateway Marriott in Arlington, VA. For more information and to register click HERE.
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