Governor's Opioid Coordination Council

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The Vermont Governor’s Opioid Coordination Council has 22 members appointed by Governor Scott, representing state and local government, service providers, people who have experienced opioid addiction personally and in their families, law enforcement and emergency responders from all parts of Vermont.

recommended strategies

The Council’s first report to Governor Scott includes 22 recommendations for next steps to continue Vermont’s progress in addressing the opioid crisis. These recommendations are designed to empower local communities, align the delivery of services within state government, and between government and private services, to ensure effective results in:

  • Prevention: Addressing the drivers of demand for opioids, including prescribing practices, education at all levels, and social and community engagement.
  • Treatment: Ensuring timely, affordable and effective treatment is available to all in need.
  • Recovery: Making recovery from addiction sustainable through support systems, with emphasis on employment, housing, social supports, and engagement.
  • Law Enforcement: Reducing supply through investigation and prosecution; policy changes to address the rising presence of fentanyl, and continued work against the diversion of prescription opioids.

Read the report summary

Read the full report 

These recommendations primarily follow the pathways of policy, programs, infrastructure, and investment. Learn more about drivers and pathways

About the Council

Governor Scott created the position of Director of Drug Prevention Policy and the Vermont Opioid Coordination Council in his second Executive Order (#02-17, updated in #09-17) on January 5, 2017. The Council’s first meeting was on May 8, 2017.

In the executive order, Governor Scott charged the Council “to lead and strengthen Vermont’s response to the opiate crisis by ensuring full interagency and intra-agency coordination between state and local governments in the areas of prevention, treatment, recovery and law enforcement activities.”

Governor Scott's three-pronged approach is to:

  1. Reduce the demand for opioids through education, building strong families and neighborhoods, and increasing economic and job opportunities;
  2. Afford adequate and effective treatment and recovery opportunities to those addicted to opioids; and
  3. Reduce the supply of opioids through robust and coordinated law enforcement targeting drug traffickers and through preventing diversion of prescription opioids.

The first task of the Council is to provide recommendations to Governor Scott for actions that will result in short- and long-term improvement in prevention, treatment, recovery and enforcement. The first set of recommendations are being prepared for mid-November 2017.

Events

Opioid Overdose Awareness Event, April 11, 2018

Workforce Summit, April 17, 2017

Commentaries
Council Members

Click on the council member's name to read their biography.

 council Member

  Term Expiration

Seat Requirements

David Allaire, Mayor of Rutland

4/30/2019

Vermont Mayors’ Coalition

Tom Anderson, Commissioner of Public Safety

N/A

Commissioner of Public Safety (tri-chair)

Lori Augustyniak, PreventionWorks! Director

4/30/2019

Substance Abuse Prevention & Treatment Professional

Bob Bick, Howard Center Director

4/30/2019

Designated Agency

Jill Berry Bowen, Northwestern Medical Center Director

4/30/2019

Vermont Association of Hospitals and Health Systems

Michael Bucossi, Brattleboro Fire Chief

4/30/2019

First Responder

Adam Bunting, Champlain Valley Union Principal

4/30/2019

Educator in Substance Abuse Prevention

Sara Byers, Leonardo’s Pizza

4/30/2019

At-large Business

Christina Nolan, U.S. Attorney, Vermont

N/A

U.S. Attorney, District of Vermont

Jon DeLena

4/30/2019

U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency

Seth DiSanto, Newport Police Chief

4/30/2019

Vermont Association of Chiefs of Police

TJ Donovan, Attorney General

N/A

Vermont Attorney General

Liz Genge, Downstreet Housing

4/30/2019

Local non-profit housing organization

Al Gobeille, Secretary of Human Services

N/A

Secretary of Human Services (tri-chair)

Brian Grearson, Chief Justice Superior Court

4/30/2019

Judicial Branch

Jim Leddy, Community Leader

4/30/2019

Community Leader (tri-chair)

Mark Levine, MD, Commissioner of Health

N/A

Commissioner of Health

Peter Mallary, VAMHAR Vice-President

4/30/2019

Vermont Association for Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery

Roger Marcoux, Jr., Sheriff, Lamoille

4/30/2019

Vermont Sheriffs’ Association

Debra Ricker, Worksafe President

4/30/2019

At-large

Ken Sigsbury, Bennington Turning Point Center Director

4/30/2019

At-large

Stephanie Thompson, Springfield Select Board

4/30/2019

Vermont League of Cities and Towns

Council Committees

First Year Committees (2017)

The Council thanks the chairs and participants of the committees and working groups of the first year. The committees were Treatment and Recovery, and Prevention and Enforcement. The working groups grew out of the Governor’s Summit on the Substance Use Disorder Workforce, and addressed Licensure and Higher Education; and Affordability and Professional Development.

These teams developed information, resources, and strategy work that helped the Council to frame the first set of recommended strategies to Governor Scott, delivered January 2018. Accomplishments include working with the Secretary of State’s Office of Professional Development to implement improvements in the licensure requirements for alcohol and drug abuse counselors (LADC).

Second Year Committees (2018)

Two new committees will focus on action in key strategy areas. They will work with state agencies and departments, providers, and the private sector to ensure further development and implementation of key OCC’s recommended strategies. Each will provide to the Governor an interim report July 2018, and a final report October 2018.

The Recovery Strategies Committee will:

  • Strengthen Vermont’s Recovery Network, Recovery Centers and Recovery Coaching.
  • Expand the availability of and access to Recovery Housing.
  • Expand Employment in Recovery including supports for employees and employers.

In school and community-based prevention programming, the Prevention Strategies Committee will:

  • In school and community-based prevention programming:
  • Implement statewide comprehensive system for delivery of school-based prevention programs.
  • Build, replicate, and support strong community-based models through multi-sector partnerships, innovation, and research resulting in outcomes that exceed previous, less collaborative efforts.
  • Ensure the implementation of an event/series that engages and involves youth in prevention activities, through both school and community avenues.
  • Create a comprehensive drug prevention messaging campaign.
  • In addition, monitor and ensure forward movement to:
    • Expand health care education, monitoring and screening for providers and patients.
    • Supply with naloxone and provide effective training to all Vermont law enforcement EMS, and people likely to be near a person who may overdose.
Contact Information

Vermont Opioid Coordination Council
Agency of Human Services, Office of the Secretary
280 State Drive, Building E
Waterbury, Vermont 05671
802-241-0572

Jolinda LaClair (bio)
Director
Drug Prevention Policy and the Opioid Coordination Council
Jolinda.LaClair@vermont.gov

Rose Gowdey (bio)
Community Engagement Liaison
Drug Prevention Policy and the Opioid Coordination Council
Rose.Gowdey@vermont.gov