Broome County will distribute first round of opioid settlement funds
Seven local organizations will receive over $850,000.
Each organization received individual grants of $58,000 to $150,000. Broome County is set to receive over $8 million in opioid settlement money over the next several years.
The projects benefiting from this first round of funding include harm reduction efforts, education, and housing programs.
Broome County Executive Jason Garnar said in choosing the first round of organizations to fund, the county tried to look at local gaps in services.
“For too long, people thought, well, we just need more treatment. And of course, treatment is an important component. But we also need to address this from every single angle,” Garnar said. “So in addition to treatment, the projects that are getting funded will also assist with prevention, intervention, education, harm reduction, and recovery.”
Alexis Pleus is the executive director of Truth Pharm, a local advocacy group that will receive funding for harm reduction, grief services, and support programs for families.
Pleus lost her own son to an overdose in 2014. She said TruthPharm has worked for years pushing accountability for pharmaceutical companies involved in the overdose crisis.
“So these funds mean something to us,” Pleus said. “Because we assisted in gaining these funds, and making sure that people recognize the devastation that Big Pharma played out in this country.”
County officials also announced they are now taking applications for the second round of funding. Organizations that received this first round of funds cannot apply a second time.
“We treat substance use disorder, in many cases—we have for generations— as a crime or a choice. It is neither. It is a health challenge,” said Congressman Marc Molinaro, who represents parts of the Southern Tier and Hudson Valley, and joined elected officials to announce the funding.
Organizations receiving the first round of opioid settlement funds include:
- The Addiction Center of Broome County
- The Hope Foundation of Binghamton
- Mothers and Babies Perinatal Network of South Central New York
- Our Lady of Lourdes Memorial Hospital
- Rural Health Network of South Central New York
- United Health Services