U.S. Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), and Doug Jones (D-Ala.), members of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, this week introduced the Jobs Plus Recovery Act to incorporate job training into drug addiction recovery programs.
In 2014, Congress passed the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), which provides job training assistance to individuals with a barrier to employment. The Jobs Plus Recovery Act would allow programs funded through WIOA to provide targeted support services to individuals with substance use disorders and consider their needs as part of state and local strategic planning processes to tackle the opioid epidemic. It would also allow community workforce entities to educate employers about how to hire and retain employees with a history of substance use disorders. This pilot program would be the first to integrate job skills training with addiction treatment and recovery. The program would provide supportive services to ensure participant success in work-based learning that would be divided between three stages: pre-employment, early employment, and continuing employment, which may include peer recovery support services, networking and mentorship opportunities, and other wraparound services.