The Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals (BHDDH) has received a $13,119,440 four-year grant from the federal Center for Substance Abuse Treatment, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, under the Access to Recovery III (ATR) initiative. Of the total grant award, $3,352,000 will be available in the first year. The project, Accessing Recovery in Rhode Island, will address the needs of individuals with substance use disorders who are involved with child protective services, the adult criminal justice system, and/or members of the RI National Guard. The ATR grant will serve a total of 5,290 individuals over the four year period, with 791 to be served in the first year.
The grant will provide an array of substance abuse treatment services, including residential treatment, medication assisted treatment, and outpatient counseling. The grant also supports the continuing development of a recovery oriented approach that recognizes that individuals often require not only treatment but also supports to maintain their recovery. The ATR grant will provide recovery support services, including life skills, employment and housing assistance, and mental health services for individuals with co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorder.
In making the announcement, Governor Donald L. Carcieri stated, “We are very pleased that the federal government recognized our past work to address the needs of individuals with substance use disorders, and their families, by selecting RI for this grant. This is the largest influx of new treatment and recovery funds in our State’s history. This grant will provide support for over 5000 individuals and it will allow many of our community agencies to hire new staff or support existing staff. These funds will allow us to continue and expand our efforts to provide treatment and supports and enhance our development of a recovery oriented system of care.”
Craig Stenning, Director of BHDDH, added, “We were fortunate, in the past, to have received the ATR II grant which was for three-years and over $8 million dollars. I am very proud of the work that we did to implement that program and obviously the federal government approved of our outcomes since this competitive award is a four-year grant under ATR III which will allow for more individuals to receive treatment and support.”
Governor Carcieri added, “This is another major grant award for our State to help our veterans, our young people, and reduce the cycle of substance abuse and incarceration. I want to commend Craig Stenning for the work that he and his team did to implement the previous ATR grant which led to the awarding of this new grant at a higher level. The fact that these funds are spent at the community level through treatment agencies and faith-based organizations makes this a true partnership model.”
Gary Alexander, Secretary of the Office of Health and Human Services (OHHS) added, “The documented increase in PTSD seen in our returning veterans underscores why these services are so important. Our soldiers have supported us and now we need to have services available to support them. I commend BHDDH for their past work in this area which led to the awarding of this very competitive grant.”