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New Program To Help People Addicted To Opioids Receives $5 Million

 Prescription bottle for Oxycodone pills on a metal table.
Steve Heap/steheap
Adobe Stock
Support to Communities: Fostering Opioid Recovery through Workforce Development is a new pilot program meant to help those impacted by the opioid epidemic.

A new Florida program to help people addicted to opioids is getting $5 million. The program will provide wrap-around services, including recovery help and career training for people struggling with opioid addiction. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis says the coronavirus pandemic has added another layer to the opioid epidemic.

"We have more overdoses that have occurred over the last six months year over year than it occurred previously. And so, this is just something that we're going to have to face," DeSantis says.

Katie Bowman is celebrating eight years clean from an opioid addiction. She says the pandemic creates an environment that supports drug abuse.

"We love isolation when we're alone. We like to be alone with our shame and our guilt and our addiction," Bowman says.

Money to fund the program comes from the U.S. Department of labor. It will also be used to train workers in medical, mental health, and substance-abuse recovery-related fields.

Robbie Gaffney graduated from Florida State University with degrees in Digital Media Production and Creative Writing. Before working at WFSU, they recorded FSU’s basketball and baseball games for Seminole Productions as well as interned for the PBS Station in Largo, Florida. Robbie loves playing video games such as Shadow of the Colossus, Animal Crossing, and Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles. Their other hobbies include sleeping and watching anime.