Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $1,299,969)
The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) is applying to the Comprehensive Opioid, Stimulant, and Substance Abuse Site Based Program, Category 1b: Local Applications, Subcategory 1b for funding in the amount of $1,299,969 for the “Flagler County COSSAP Initiative”. Flagler County is located on the east coast of central Florida along I-95 between Jacksonville and Daytona Beach with a size of 483 square miles and an estimated 108,000 citizens. Flagler County is home to the City of Palm Coast which is the county’s major residential area (concentrated population of 83,000) compared to the rest of the county’s communities that are rural and resource challenged. Regarding both the severity of substance abuse disorders and lack of treatment resources, Flagler has been, and remains, one of the most distressed counties in all of Florida. Statistical trends signal an uphill substance abuse challenge for the Sheriff’s Office and local treatment providers given the known high level of substance abuse disorders in general and the sharp rise in overdoses largely attributable to opioid and methamphetamine abuse. The purpose of the project is to better address the many needs of the OUD/SUD population in Flagler County by implementing the following allowable use activities: 1) drug take-back program (1%), 2) naloxone for law enforcement (1%), 3) evidence-based SUD treatment including CBT and MAT while in detention and following release (30%), 4) transitional recovery housing (21.4%) and 5) peer recovery support during reentry (12%). Priority considerations addressed in this application include 1A (see pp. 9, 17) and a research partnership (see pp. 13-14, 19-20). A research team consisting of Drs. J. Mitchell Miller and Holly Ventura Miller from the University of North Florida and Dr. Bryan Lee Miller from Clemson University will serve as the evaluators for the proposed initiative. This proposal includes a comprehensive mixed-methods process and outcome evaluation incorporating both qualitative and quantitative research techniques designed to determine adherence to evidence based practice, programmatic fidelity, and outcome effectiveness. The proposed project will infuse sincerely needed resources into one of the states most devastated by the still rising opioids crisis and provide examples of data collection and evaluation steps that could be replicated in other criminal justice and public health settings.