Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $674,187)
On the Red Lake Reservation in northern Minnesota, opioid-related overdoses have increased by over 100% between 2020 and 2021. In addition, the reported number of opioid-related deaths, inpatient incidences, emergency department incidences, and drug related criminal offenses increased. The opioid epidemic continues to be a public health burden on the Red Lake Reservation, in Indian Country as well as the U.S. An estimated 130 people die each day from an opioid related drug overdose (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services [HHS], 2021). In response to this crisis among tribal relatives, in 2017, the Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians’ (Red Lake Nation) Tribal Council declared a state of emergency due to “Large scale drug trafficking and addiction of many tribal members to dangerous illegal drugs and powerful prescription opioids”.
Red Lake Nation proposes to utilize 95% of Comprehensive Opioid, Stimulant, and Substance Abuse Site-based Program project funding to enhance its Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) Program that utilizes a culturally based arrest diversion model as a means for prevention of overdose, addiction, and recidivism in response to the Opioid, Stimulant, and Substance Abuse epidemic that plagues its four reservation districts. The Red Lake LEAD Program is a collaborative community safety effort that works as an alternative to booking people into jail for criminal activity that stems from unmet behavioral health needs, addiction, and poverty on the Red Lake Reservation. Enhancement will be made by increasing Red Lake LEAD Program staff with two Cultural Case managers, office support staff member, and training that will keep the program abreast of new initiatives in its efforts to reduce recidivism, substance abuse, violence, and associated outcomes such as incarceration. COSSAP funding will allow for increased implementation of cultural knowledge and resources within the community to aid our relatives struggling with addiction. 5% of the budget will be utilized to purchase Narcan kits to distribute.
Seeking priority Consideration 1(b). Addressed on page 10 of the narrative.