$11 million in Justice Department grants to combat addiction crisis

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A stack of $100 bills (Nexstar, file)

DENVER – U.S. Attorney Jason R. Dunn announced on Wednesday awards of $11,281,830 in Department of Justice grants to fight drug abuse and addiction in Colorado. The grants were awarded by the Department’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP) and are part of more than $341 million going to communities nationwide.

“The opioid crisis in Colorado is real and getting worse, and it is affecting too many Coloradans during these tough economic times,” said U.S. Attorney Jason Dunn.  “Combining these grants with our efforts to target both local and transnational drug traffickers with criminal prosecution allows us to have a real impact on both the supply side and the demand side of the problem.”

“The addiction crisis has taken an enormous toll on America’s families and communities, eroding public health, threatening public safety and claiming tens of thousands of lives year after year,” said Attorney General William P. Barr. “Through comprehensive measures taken by this administration, we have been able to curtail the opioid epidemic, but new and powerful drugs are presenting exceptional challenges that we must be prepared to meet. The Justice Department’s substantial investments in enforcement, response, and treatment will help us overcome these challenges and work towards freeing Americans from abuse and addiction.”

According to a press release, illegal drugs, and illicit drug use have claimed the lives of nearly 400,000 Americans since the turn of the century. Powerful synthetic opioids like fentanyl are exacting an enormous toll on families and communities, and an emergence in the use of methamphetamines and other psychostimulants is drawing drug traffickers and driving up overdose rates.

Three years ago, President Trump declared a Public Health Emergency and initiated a whole-of-government approach dedicated to ending this national tragedy. The Department of Justice has invested unprecedented levels of funding in combating the addiction crisis. The awards announced today build on those earlier investments.

“If we hope to defeat an enemy as powerful, persistent and adaptable as illicit drugs, we must be at least as determined and versatile, focusing our ingenuity and resources on curbing abuse and fighting addiction,” said OJP’s Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan. “These grants will enable criminal justice officials and substance abuse, mental health and other medical professionals to pool their assets and bring the full weight of our public safety and treatment systems down on this epidemic that has already caused so much harm.”

Funding is made available through OJP’s Bureau of Justice Assistance, National Institute of Justice, Office for Victims of Crime and Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

The following grants are being funded:

  • The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment will receive $6,000,000 to implement, enhance or evaluate responses to the opioid and stimulant crises.
  • The Colorado Judicial Department will receive: $498,080 to enhance their existing fully operational veterans treatment courts; $750,000 to support their statewide efforts to enhance or expand adult drug court or veterans treatment court services; and $453,445 for the expansion of parental substance use disorder treatment services in existing family drug courts.
  • The Colorado Division of Criminal Justice will receive $452,616 for their residential substance abuse treatment program for state prisoners.
  • The City of Alamosa will receive $599,997 and Boulder County will receive $884,014 to expand access to supervision, treatment and recovery support services, support law enforcement and other first responder diversion programs for non-violent drug offenders, promote education and prevention activities; and address the needs of children impacted by the opioid and stimulant epidemics.
  • The Boulder Municipal Court will receive $400,000 to develop effective responses to low-level and non-violent offenses involving opioids.
  • Partners in Routt County will receive $1,243,678 to address opioid and other substance abuse by building a youth mentoring program.

For a complete list of individual grant programs, award amounts, and jurisdictions that will receive funding, click here. More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.

The year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the Department of Justice. Learn more about the history of our agency at www.Justice.gov/Celebrating150Years

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