Pa. awards $6M to fight overdose deaths in underrepresented communities | Tuesday Morning Coffee

Nineteen organizations across the state will share in more than $6 million in state grant funding to help them fight substance use disorder, the Shapiro administration has announced.

The money, which is being targeted at underrepresented communities, will allow qualifying organizations to establish or expand substance use disorder (SUD) services, and offer community outreach services and education, the administration said in a statement.

The grants of up to $400,000 will run for 12 months from July 1, 2023 through June 30, 2024, the administration said.

“Trends in drug overdose deaths show widening disparities between demographic groups, both in Pennsylvania and nationally,” acting state Drug and Alcohol Programs Secretary Dr. Latika Davis-Jones said in a statement.

(Source: Pa. Dept. of Drug & Alcohol Programs)

Agency data show that overdose death rates increased by 39% for Black Pennsylvanians compared to 2019. And in 2021, Black Pennsylvanians died from overdoses at a rate nearly two times higher than white Pennsylvanians, the agency said in its statement.

“Communities of color are experiencing disproportionally higher rates of overdose deaths and are less likely to receive substance use treatment or supports,” Davis-Jones said. “This funding will provide additional resources to organizations that are on the front lines of helping Pennsylvania communities facing the opioid crisis.”

(Source:Pa. Dept. of Drug & Alcohol Programs)

The organizations eligible for funding “provide services, outreach, and/or education to communities of color that promote access to harm reduction services, low-barrier SUD and medication-assisted treatment (MAT), recovery and peer supports, and/or offender reentry supports,” the agency said in its statement.

Below, a list of the qualifying organizations:

  • Bethany Christian of Western PA,  Crawford and Erie counties
  • Crossroads Treatment Centers,  Allegheny and Philadelphia counties
  • Helping Hands Ministries, Mercer County
  • Horizon House, Philadelphia County
  • Macedonia FACE, Allegheny County
  • Mid-Atlantic Rehabilitation Services (MARS), Lehigh and Northampton counties
  • PA Counseling Services, Adams, Berks, Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Fulton,  Lancaster, Lebanon, Perry, Schuylkill, and York  counties
  • Partners for Quality Foundation, Allegheny County
  • Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Philadelphia County
  • Pinnacle Treatment, Washington and Centre counties
  • Preventive Measures, Lehigh and Northampton counties
  • Reading Hospital,  Berks County
  • Recovery Coaching Services, Berks County
  • Tadiso, Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Washington, Armstrong, Greene, Lawrence, Indiana, Westmoreland, and Fayette counties
  • Three Rivers Youth, Allegheny County
  • Tree of Life Bible Church, Allegheny County
  • Unity Recovery, Philadelphia County
  • UPMC Pinnacle Hospitals, Adams, Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Fulton, Juniata, Lancaster, Lebanon, Mifflin, Perry, and York counties
  • Wedge Medical Center, Inc., Philadelphia County

Funding for the grants was “provided from the opioid settlement funding that was appropriated to DDAP by the General Assembly,” the agency said in its statement.

Originally published at,by John L. Micek

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