The city of Portsmouth Health Department is now the recipient of a $125,000 Drug-Free Communities courtesy of grant U.S. Sen. Rob Portman. R-OH.
In 1997, Portman authored the Drug-Free Communities Act, advertised as supporting evidence-based, community-oriented drug prevention programs.
Portman’s office states the Drug-Free Communities Act is designed to be optimally effective and accountable by capping the amount spent on administrative and overhead expenses, requiring all coalitions that receive grants to have experience in drug abuse prevention, and to match federal funding with local funds. No other drug prevention program has achieved the same reduction in youth drug use that has been achieved consistently by the DFC program. Portman issued the following statement on grants issued to some 20-plus Ohio anti-drug organizations.
“The Drug-Free Communities program is a proven, evidence-based, and community-oriented program that reduces substance abuse among our nation’s youth,” Portman said. “I authored this legislation more than 20 years ago during my time in the House of Representatives, and it remains today the most effective program for consistently reducing youth drug use.
“I have seen firsthand that prevention is a powerful tool to counteract drug use in our community, and this funding helps youth throughout Ohio make better, more healthy choices. These grants will help those on the frontlines in Ohio combat this crisis as we work together to turn the tide of addiction.”
In addition to Portsmouth, other Ohio organizations to receive funding included the Northern Ohio Recovery Association in Cleveland; the Erie County Health Department; the Cincinnati HOPE Coalition; the YMCA of Greater Toledo; and, numerous others. A health department spokesperson could not immediately be reached for comment.