Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $698,500)
A partnership among San Luis Obispo (SLO) County’s Behavioral Health Department, Superior Court, Probation Department, and local community stakeholders seeks a Category 2: Enhancement grant for its Adult Drug Court (ADC). SLO County is a suburban-rural jurisdiction in California (pop. 283,000) with post-adjudication misdemeanor and felony drug court that proposes to provide Recovery Residence (sober housing) services to 40-60 individuals per year, for four years, for a total of 200 individuals served by this grant proposal. The target population is adults that are high-risk and high-needs, as assessed the Level of Service Inventory – Revised (LSI-R), who have been concurrently diagnosed with at least one substance use disorder and may also have a mild to moderate mental health diagnosis. The amount of funding requested is $750,000 for this grant.
California opened the State back up in June 2021 and now we lift the cloak of COVID-19 to see the deaths and impacts of despair and isolation in the substance using population. SLO County average overdose mortality rate is 23.5 which is above the national average at 21.6 (HRSA, 2017-2019). Eighty-eight (88) deaths in a single year (reported by SLO County Coroner Office, 2021) which demonstrates the impact of fentanyl in our community and the overdose rates are mostly attributed to polydrug use (fentanyl/stimulants/opioids). We are now worse off than we ever were pre-pandemic. That is why it is so important to continue to focus our efforts on Adult Drug Court now and for the next four years to reverse our trends.
Additionally, San Luis Obispo County is the eleventh least affordable housing in the United States (2017). Recovery Housing is one component of the SUD treatment and recovery continuum of care. When contracted with the County’s certified Drug and Alcohol Services intensive and outpatient treatment services, a level of 3.1 ASAM Criteria results. Recovery Houses are safe, healthy, family-like substance-free living environments that support individuals in recovery from substance use disorders. Recovery Houses are not covered by Medi-Cal or other insurance resources, therefore, ADC is not able to fund the housing services adequately without this federal grant assistance.
When successful, participants in the ADC will have improved the quality of their lives, reduced the impacts of addiction, and increased health and well-being of the individual. Overall, there will be an increase in the rate of completion for the ADC, reunification of families, and establishment of a long-term recovery lifestyle.