COLUMBUS—State Senator Bob Peterson (R-Washington Court House) announced funding awarded Wednesday for local law enforcement response teams focused on putting overdose survivors on the path to recovery.
Mobilizing response teams consisting of law enforcement officers who partner with local drug treatment providers and other groups is an effective strategy being implemented in communities across Ohio.
Administered by the Ohio Attorney General’s office, the new grant program will provide local assistance for replicating and expanding Drug Abuse Response Teams (DARTs) and Quick Response Teams (QRTs) in the most severely impacted areas.
“Our goal is to help prevent drug-related deaths and overdose recurrence, making long-term recovery possible for those struggling with addiction,” said Peterson. “Support for these programs helps law enforcement connect addicted individuals with recovery services, which is key in saving lives and helping affected families begin to heal.”
Funding for these grants was added by the Ohio Senate as part of the state’s overall effort to tackle the opioid crisis by improving prevention programs and strengthening law enforcement as well as treatment and recovery services, according to Peterson.
“We are committed to fighting the scourge of addiction, and I’m pleased we were able to fund these grants as part of the new state budget,” said Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina).
Ohio spends nearly $1 billion each year to fight drug abuse and addiction. The state’s main operating budget, signed into law in late June, allocates an additional $180 million in targeted prevention, recovery and enforcement efforts. Highlighting the state’s priority to get these dollars to local communities, the budget also invested in recovery centers and child protective services to assist in caring for children who have been abandoned by drug-addicted parents, according to Peterson. It also directs additional funding to coroners and criminal labs with overwhelmed capacities as a result of the epidemic.