WASHINGTON, DC â€“ The U.S. Department of Labor today announced an opioid-crisis Dislocated Worker Grant (DWG) to the Connecticut Department of Labor for up to $4,757,845, with $1,585,948 released initially. This grant will provide disaster-relief jobs and employment services to eligible individuals in Connecticut affected by the health and economic effects of widespread opioid use, addiction, and overdose.
This grant will provide eligible participants with disaster-relief employment as peer navigators in American Job Centers and community centers. These positions provide individuals affected by the opioid crisis with the appropriate referrals for counseling and supportive services, as well as guide them through preparations for new careers. Project funds will also assist with the provision of career and training services to eligible individuals transitioning to jobs addressing the opioid crisis, such as credentialed counselors and recovery coaches.
Connecticut anticipates serving approximately 300 grant participants in Fairfield, Hartford, Litchfield, Middlesex, New Haven, New London, Tolland, and Windham counties.
â€œThe U.S. Department of Labor is helping people suffering from the effects of the opioid crisis find productive and sustainable employment,â€� said Acting Secretary of Labor Patrick Pizzella. â€œThese funds are an important investment in Connecticutâ€™s efforts to respond to this emergency.â€�
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services declared the opioid crisis a national public health emergency in October 2017, enabling Connecticut to request this funding for a DWG project.
Supported by theÂ Workforce Innovation and Opportunity ActÂ of 2014, Dislocated Worker Grants temporarily expand the service capacity of dislocated worker programs at the state and local levels by providing funding assistance in response to large, unexpected economic events that cause significant job losses.
The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.