State launches fund to help those recovering from opioid use disorder find and keep employment

Maryland labor and health officials plan to award grant money to local organizations to develop programs that help people recovering from opioid use disorders prepare to get jobs and keep the positions.

Funding for the Opioid Workforce Innovation Fund comes from a $1.9 million grant awarded last year by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Officials say the idea is to reduce barriers to employment that can support recovery for those affected by the surging epidemic, which has led to a record number of fatal overdoses locally and nationally.

It also aims to help employers, who have been struggling to fill positions at a time of low unemployment.

The program by the state departments of Health and Labor, Licensing and Regulation will consider proposals from various entities and approve grants on a rolling basis until funding is gone. More information about the fund can be found at www.dllr.maryland.gov/employment/opioid.

meredith.cohn@baltsun.com

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