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Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office Harm Reduction Program The SHARP Program will fill system gaps and expand the efforts of the successful Strategies and Tactics for Opioid Prevention Program.

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Awardee County
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $718,524)

Substance Use Disorder and related issues are a burden on the citizens of
Rutherford County, TN. In 2021, there were 3,841 fatal overdoses in Tennessee, of which 141
were in Rutherford County. According to the latest CDC data, Tennessee is reported to have the
11th highest rate of overdose deaths per 100,000 population. Rutherford County’s 2021 overdose
fatality rate was 34/100,000 persons. It is our intent to use this year’s award to develop the
Sheriff’s Harm Reduction Program (SHARP). SHARP will reduce substance use disorder (SUD)
and overdose in persons encountering law enforcement while reducing recidivism and
incarceration for drug related offenses within the jurisdiction of Rutherford County, Tennessee.
This project is in collaboration with Prevention Coalition for Success, Rutherford County Adult
Detention Center, Rutherford County Correctional Work Center, Rutherford County Medical
Examiner, Rutherford Opioid Board, 16th Judicial District Recovery Court, and Rutherford
County Re-Entry Program. All participants listed above are stakeholders in regard to
rehabilitation, recidivism and re-entry of incarcerated persons into the community. SHARP will
accomplish this by embedding two Certified Peer Support Specialists (CPSS) into Rutherford
County Adult Detention Center and Rutherford County Correctional Work Center. These CPSS
will assist individuals with navigation of the behavioral healthcare system and recovery
resources for incarcerated persons. The Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance
Abuse Services describes CPSS as “having the ability to support others in achieving their
personal recovery goals by promoting self-determination, personal responsibility, and
empowerment in self-directed recovery.” SHARP will also utilize funding for transportation of
SUD individuals to behavioral healthcare facilities. SHARP will fill a substantial gap in service
provision in Rutherford County, by providing treatment services for incarcerated persons.
SHARP’s aim is to detect incarcerated individuals struggling with SUD and give them the
opportunity to access the services they need by identifying effective behavioral interventions andbolstering community and supervision services to curtail use. We will connect individuals to
establish evidence-based treatment services for those struggling with SUD. Through SHARP,
this vulnerable population will receive greater access to treatment and recovery services, which
will reduce the impact and misuse of opioids, stimulants, and other substances, and reduce
overdose fatalities in Rutherford County. The project will leverage the strides Rutherford County
has made in recognizing and addressing SUD in every population and address our shortcomings
in intercepting and addressing SUD problems within our correction facilities.

Date Created: September 25, 2023