Chief Joseph Cordeiro is pleased to announce that the New Bedford Police Department has received a grant from the Police Assisted Addiction and Recovery Initiative (P.A.A.R.I.) to bring on a full-time AmeriCorps VISTA member to increase the department’s addiction and recovery program capacity.
This groundbreaking new National Recovery Corps program will allow 17 full-time members to serve within police departments in 9 states to help build, strengthen, and sustain police-led programs to reduce and prevent overdose deaths and help more people with opioid use disorder get into treatment and recovery. P.A.A.R.I has selected New Bedford PD as one of the law enforcement host sites for the inaugural year of this new initiative. The program is set to launch in July 2019.
“New Bedford is extremely dedicated to improving the lives of all of its citizens. The Opioid Drug Task Force meets on a regular basis to promote both harm reduction supplies and strategies, and to help those impacted receive medically assisted treatment programs. P.A.A.R.I. has been a wonderful addition to our collaborative efforts and we are looking forward to building on the work that has been done in the city.” – Chief Joseph Cordeiro
P.A.A.R.I. is currently operating an award-winning program in Massachusetts that embeds AmeriCorps members directly in police departments as recovery coaches and program coordinators. P.A.A.R.I. has received a grant for $412,749 from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) to expand the program through AmeriCorps VISTA, bringing P.A.A.R.I.’s National Recovery Corps team to a total of 42 national service members.
“The opioid epidemic has left an indelible scar in communities across America. Addressing this crisis will take an all-hands-on-deck effort and everyone has a role to play,” said Barbara Stewart, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service, the federal agency that administers the AmeriCorps program.
The Police Assisted Addiction & Recovery Initiative (P.A.A.R.I.) is a nonprofit organization with a mission to help law enforcement agencies nationwide create non-arrest pathways to treatment and recovery. Founded alongside the groundbreaking Gloucester Police Department Angel Initiative in June 2015, P.A.A.R.I. has been a driving force behind this rapidly expanding community policing movement. We provide technical assistance, coaching, grants, and other capacity-building resources to more than 465 police departments in 33 states. P.A.A.R.I. and our law enforcement partners are working towards a collective vision where non-arrest diversion programs become a standard policing practice across the country, thereby reducing overdose deaths, expanding access to treatment, improving public safety, reducing crime, diverting people away from the criminal justice system, and increasing trust between law enforcement and their communities. Our programs and partners have saved thousands of lives, changed police culture, and reshaped the national conversation about the opioid epidemic. Learn more at www.paariusa.org.
About AmeriCorps VISTA:
AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) members bring passion and perseverance where the need is greatest: to organizations that help eradicate poverty. AmeriCorps VISTA members serve as a catalyst for change, living and working alongside community members to meet our nation’s most pressing challenges and advance local solutions. Since 1965, over 220,000 VISTA members have served with the mission to strengthen organizations that alleviate poverty. VISTA serves in each of the 50 US States and in all US Territories. VISTA members go where they are needed and make a difference through volunteering and the mobilization of resources.