Ohio JFS getting millions for disaster-relief jobs

Staff report

The U.S. Department of Labor has announced an opioid-crisis Dislocated Worker Grant (DWG) to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services for up to $11 million, with $3,666,667 released initially.

The grant will provide disaster-relief jobs and employment services to eligible individuals in Ohio impacted by the health and economic effects of widespread opioid use, addiction, and overdose.

Funding will provide eligible participants disaster-relief employment in positions addressing the impacts of the opioid crisis, such as peer recovery coaches and social service aids assisting children placed in foster care resultant of parental substance abuse. The project will also provide training and employment services to eligible participants impacted by the crisis and seeking careers in in-demand jobs related to addiction, treatment, prevention, and pain management.

The state anticipates serving approximately 893 participants in Ohio.

“Opioid abuse devastates families and communities,” U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta said. “Providing a support system to individuals to overcome their addiction and find family-sustaining job opportunities is a critical part of recovery. The DWG will help individuals impacted by the opioid crisis remain in and return to the workforce.”

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine said the grant will help meet the unique needs of communities working together to provide resources for individuals battling addiction. “Recovery involves not just treatment, but ongoing supports to help individuals lead healthy, productive lives,” he said.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services declared the opioid crisis a national public health emergency in October 2017, enabling Ohio to request funding for a DWG project.

DWG temporarily expands the service capacity of dislocated worker programs at the state and local levels by providing funding assistance in response to large, unexpected economic events that cause significant job losses.

Staff report