Labor department grants Maryland opioid recovery fund

WASHINGTON — Maryland is one of six states receiving part of a $22 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor.

The state will use its $1.9 million portion of the grant to assist residents affected by opioid use, addiction and overdose who want to return to the workforce.

Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta said a family-sustaining job is a critical step toward long-term recovery from opioid misuse.

The re-employment services enabled as a result of this grant will enhance existing workforce development programs in Maryland, according to Maryland’s Department of Labor. Available resources include job training, placement and credentialing.

To help folks meet their employment goals, there will also be peer recovery specialists in American Job Centers throughout the state.

“Peer recovery specialists are a critical component in Maryland’s opioid response efforts,” says Maryland Labor Secretary Kelly M. Schulz.

“By expanding the state’s established peer network to include linkage for those seeking to re-enter the workforce, the Department of Labor’s proposal will offer a supportive and necessary resource to individuals who have experienced the impact of an opioid-use disorder, and their potential employers.”

The federal money is also being provided to Alaska, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Washington through the National Health Emergency Dislocated Worker program.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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