|CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources’ (DHHR) Office of Drug Control Policy (ODCP), Fayetteville Police Department, and West Virginia Sober Living have launched the state’s first Police and Peers program, which partners peer recovery support specialists (PRSS) with law enforcement when responding to non-violent, non-law enforcement-specific incidents. |
Police and Peers PRSS are trained in opioid reversal, case management, and motivational interviewing to de-escalate situations involving behavioral health, substance use, or domestic violence and provide referrals to treatment.
“The integration of peer support services within law enforcement agencies will create an additional pathway to recovery within our communities,” said Jostin Holmes, ODCP Program Manager for Police and Peers. “This program creates more community connections and implements evidence-based practices to save lives while providing support to public safety.”
|Police and Peers provides pathways to treatment by providing the knowledge, partnerships, connections, and resources not currently offered by law enforcement to the communities.“I see the need in our communities of people needing help in many ways including substance misuse. I believe the Police and Peers program is a step in the right direction,” said Fayetteville Police Chief Glenn Chapman. “Not only does it help the community, but it helps the first responders. Together, we will change lives.” ODCP was awarded $3.16 million over four years in federal funding from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration for Police and Peers, which will expand to nine additional police departments by the end of the year. To learn more about DHHR’s Office of Drug Control Policy, click here.|