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New bill proposes integration of job training in drug addiction recovery programs

For the thousands of patients enlisted in addiction treatment centers, the road ahead can turn out to be both rocky and bumpy. Even after completing a grueling and often painful treatment programs at addiction help centers, they fail to be assimilated into the mainstream society due to the lack of acceptability. To add to their woes, most lack the appropriate skills and expertise needed for being gainfully employed.

To overcome the above-mentioned gaps, American senators, including Tim Kaine of Virginia, Doug Jones of Alabama and Todd Young of Indiana, introduced the bill Jobs Plus Recovery Act, which integrates job training in drug addiction recovery programs. In the light of the close association between employment and long-term sobriety, experts and researchers expect the new legislation to increase the success rate of addiction treatment by enhancing self-esteem, ensuring a constant source of income, etc. The legislation aims to accelerate the chances of recovery and decrease the risk of a relapse.

Endorsed by the Association of Career and Technical Education (ACTE), Jobs for the Future (JFF), etc., the legislation will establish a pilot program to provide opioid-impacted individuals a second lease of life, ensure recovery by providing them access to job training and other services. Being a life-long battle, the bill will ensure integration of job training in the long-term treatment programs by expanding public-private partnership. Shedding light on the new act, the senators emphasized that the goal is to save lives by turning people grappling with opioid addiction into contributing members of the society.

Main elements of the Jobs Plus Recovery Act

The Jobs Plus Recovery Act integrates job skills training with addiction treatment and recovery programs. In order to ensure constant learning and success at workplace, the legislation includes the provision of providing support services to patients during the pre-employment and early employment stages, as well as in the later stages.

Earlier in 2014, the Congress had approved the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), providing job training support to individuals facing the barrier to employment due to age, lack of education, domestic violence, rape, employer bias, history of drug addiction, disability, etc.  The Jobs Plus Recovery Act aims to use programs funded through WIOA for providing support services to people struggling with substance abuse.

Addiction treatment centers welcome the move

Almost all addiction treatment centers have welcomed the Jobs Plus Recovery Act. Most believe that the recovery patients would be less likely to relapse because of consistent work on their hands. As both employers and coworkers are uncomfortable working with those struggling with an addiction, the current move to involve the community is being seen as a welcome change.

Despite the key institutions like the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the American Medical Association (AMA) defining addiction as a disease, most Americans still consider drug addiction as a behavioral or moral failing. A recent survey indicated that around 58 percent of the respondents expressed displeasure over working closely with a person recovering from opioid addiction. Moreover, another 55 percent indicated that they were uncomfortable being neighbors to patients of addiction.

Remove stigma to ensure recovery from addiction

The Jobs Plus Recovery Act is an effective measure to remove the stigma associated with addiction. It will make it easier for patients to continue their treatment by facilitating all supportive services needed for rehabilitation. It’s time to break off from outdated prejudices and unproven perceptions about substance abuse.

If you or your loved one is grappling with substance abuse, contact the 24/7 Recovery Helpline to access the state-of-the-art residential drug rehab centers. Chat online or call at our 24/7 helpline number 855-441-4405 to undergo an effective residential drug treatment. Our experts available 24/7 can help you find the finest residential drug treatment centers in the U.S.

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