Recovery and Job Access Rides (Human Services Coordination Research Grant)
February 23, 2022
Background - On March 22, 2018 Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) was invited to the monthly meeting of the Recovery Strategies Committee of the Governor’s Opioid Coordination Council (OCC) to discuss transportation services for those struggling with substance use disorders. While we provided an overview of the standard route and demand-response services, the discussion quickly moved to the type of critical needs not accessible through the current system. Trips to essential services such as support group and meetings, Recovery Centers, drug testing sites, job training and access, etc. were highlighted and we were asked to form a Recovery Transportation Working Group with several members of the OCC.
Service Needs - Through surveys, discussions, and data received, the working group identified the following needs not covered by current programs (including but not limiting to):
- Group Meetings and Therapy sessions
- Access to Recovery Centers
- Access to Drug Testing sites
- Medical Appointments
- Job Access (training, interviews, and initial commutes)
Group Meetings and Therapy sessions
Access to Recovery Centers
Access to Drug Testing sites
Job Access (training, interviews, and initial commutes)
- VTrans recently received a grant for $170,000 with $160,000 slated for operating costs to cover these gaps in services not covered by Medicaid and/or Elders and Persons with Disabilities program funds.
- Remaining $10,000 is for data analysis and implementation assistance.
- $40,000 in Federal dollars, with a 50% match requirement, was separately awarded to Rural Community Transportation (RCT) and Marble Valley Regional District to assist recovery centers with transportation trips in Essex, Orleans, Caledonia and Lamoille and Rutland Counties. This has now been expanded statewide with new pilots implemented with Green Mountain Community Network, Green Mountain Transit (Rural division), MOOver (formerly SEVT) and Tri-Valley Transit.
- Federal dollars require a 50% local match and VTrans is working with recovery centers, local businesses, state government and other stakeholders to generate local contributions.
- Planning groups met, and kick-off meetings were conducted in all the regions mentioned explaining eligibility criteria (Roadmap). Only currently non-eligible trips will be provided through these funds – it is critical existing programs are used first to correctly identify the true need (or gaps) in service
- Based on data analysis of trip volume additional unobligated funds may be awarded to individual transit providers to increase statewide regional accessibility in all Vermont rural service areas.
For more information, please contact Tim Bradshaw at 802-461-5310, email@example.com , Ross MacDonald at 802-522-7120, firstname.lastname@example.org or Dan Currier at 802-279-5236, email@example.com.