BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) –– Bluefield and Beckley are among the communities receiving help from the federal government as a result of the opioid crisis. The U.S. Department of Labor made the announcement on Friday, May 31, 2019.
Workforce West Virginia will receive up to $10,000,000 in an opioid-crisis Dislocated Worker Grant. According to a news release, the initial cash coming to the Mountain State will be $3,333,333. The funding will provide disaster-relief jobs and employment services to eligible individuals in West Virginia who are impacted by health and economic effects of widespread opioid use, addiction and overdose.
Grant funded jobs include responders to deliver humanitarian assistance to the opioid-impacted homeless population and peer recovery coaches to help affected individuals navigate the path to recovery. The grant also will provide healthcare professionals with training related to addiction, treatment, prevention and pain management.
In addition to Beckley and Bluefield, West Virginia anticipates the grant will serve communities in Charleston, Huntington, Martinsburg, Morgantown, Parkersburg and Wheeling. The state is expecting around 534 grant participants
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services declared the opioid crisis a national public health emergency in October 2017, enabling West Virginia to request this funding for a DWG project.