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Health Committee Meeting Notes – June 15th, 2021

Below are the notes from the Health Committee’s meeting on June 15th, 2021 from 11am to 12pm. 24 participants attended this meeting. To view a document file of the meeting notes, click here.

  • Welcome and Introductions

    • Kathleen Taft – new Associate Director of the United Way of Rutland County and the main representative to the Health Committee
    • Angus Chaney – Executive Directory of Homeless Prevention Center. Not a new committee member, but will now have consistent attendance
    • Kathy Boyd – Senior Director of Care Management and Population Health at RRMC. Not a new member, but will start to be a regular presence
    • Lisa Lord – Directory of Workforce Programs at Recovery Vermont
    • Bethany Yon – Chronic Disease Prevention Specialist with VDH
  • Announcements

    • Committee News
      • New zoom link for the remaining meetings of the year
        • Link is reposted with each month’s agenda on the PV page
      • No committee meeting in July
      • Starting for August meeting, intent is to have a hybrid meeting model        
        • In person component held at the Vision Center
    • Turning Point Center
      • Recovery Month Celebration
        • Thursday, September 9th, Main Street Park
        • Deathnut challenge, dunking booth, and other ideas to have a fun, entertaining event
      • Guest Chefs for Thursday Café
        • Always a need for more volunteer chefs for the Thursday Café from 11am-2pm
        • Upwards of 80 meals served – great way to meet people
        • Reimbursement for costs available
    • Mentor Connector
      • Youth Transitional Living program
        • In partnership with United Way, first housing is almost ready to move first youth into the unit on Bridge St, Rutland
        • Goal is to prepare two more units
          • 1 in Rutland, 1 in Fair Haven
      • Basic Center program
        • In coalition with the VT Coalition of Runaway and Homeless Youths
        • Early stages of developing a program to host youths for short-term stays prior to their involvement in the foster care system
        • Later down the line, the program will look for 21-day maximum family hosts
    • RRMC
      • language for previous ‘Tobacco Cessation’ program now ‘Tobacco Treatment’
  • Sub-Committee Updates

    • NOC Subcommittee – Clay Gilbert (cgilbert@rmhsccn.org)
      • Regrouping phase to chart out future path
          • Committee originally focused on alcohol, but then transitioned to address all nonopioids
          • In past year, there has been an uptick in first-time alcohol dependency, and this may lead the subcommittee to refocus on alcohol
      • PegTV interview video series starting in July, each 30 minutes in length
        • First video will be an interview of someone in long-term recovery
      • Idea to develop a way to support primary care physicians on how to talk about substance abuse
        • Many physicians are uncomfortable on asking necessary questions or navigating substance dependency situations
    • Youth Engagement Subcommittee – Chris Hultquist (Chris@MentorConnector.com)
      • Many projects – visit raisingrutland.co to sign up for more information
      • Committee meetings are first Tuesday of the month at 9am
      • Out of the Box program
        • Goal is to distribute 10,000 boxes across the county and region
        • Overall theme of boxes is “You Belong Here”
          • Building social, emotional skills; building connection; help teens learn about their surroundings and the amenities available
        • Contact Chris if you have connections that can help donate items to fill the boxes or want to help pack boxes with youth
      • Youth Pop-up events this summer
        • Events co-hosted with Parks and Rec departments across Rutland City, Fair Haven, Burlington, Bennington, Brandon, and possibly Poultney
        • Many Out of the Boxes will be distributed at these events
      • Comprehensive Rutland County Youth Asset Map
        • Connecting youth to resources in their communities
      • Youth voucher program for Rutland City
        • Proposal co-written by Mentor Connector, Rutland Parks and Rec, Tapestry and Epic, and the school district
        • Idea is to provide $400 card for each youth that can be used for any after school/ out of school third space programs
        • Based on a model in Iceland and Finland
      • Youth Councils, Rutland City and Fair Haven
        • Encourages youth to think about how they can make their communities better
        • $5,000 available for each council to pursue initiatives
      • Planet Youth survey
        • A comprehensive status of youth survey for middle schoolers and high schoolers
        • Will target Rutland City and Fair Haven schools
  • Employer Toolkit and Vermont’s Recovery Friendly Workplace Initiative – Ron Stankevich, Dominion Diagnostics (RStankevich@dominiondiagnostics.com) and Lisa Lord, Recovery Vermont (lisa@recoveryvermont.org)

    • Employer Toolkit
      • Origin of collaborative initiative is with the Chittenden County Opioid Alliance (CCOA) Working Recovery group and a $100,000 grant received by GE Health
      • CCOA surveyed Chittenden County Chamber of Commerce HR departments about reasons they hire folks in recovery
        • Survey also demonstrated that many responses did not have enough resources to articulate an opinion or support employees in recovery
        • This demonstrated an opportunity for a large workplace recovery education initiative
      • CCOA created this toolkit to help support employers with information and resources about hiring people in recovery
      • Supportive employers that provide access to treatment benefit, too
        • Absenteeism decreases by 36%
        • Work turnover decreased by 13%
        • Workers in recovery are the least likely subgroup to leave an employer
    • Vermont Recovery Friendly Workplace Initiative
      • Today, Vermont Recovery continues and builds upon the work started by the CCOA as well as the Governor’s Opioid Coordination Council
        • Helps employers remove unintentional barriers that inhibit people in recovery from acquiring and maintaining a position
      • Primary program considerations are that it remains Vermont-sized and is sustainable
        • Vermont-sized – many employers are small and do not have an HR person. Ensure all employers have access to the tools and resources of the program, regardless of workplace size
        • Sustainable – ensure the program can grow and evolve, not just be maintained
      • Initiative has three structural components: roundtable; resources; celebration
        • Roundtable – A near monthly meeting of leaders from Recovery Vermont, representatives from workplaces in the program, HR departments, and Vt Dept of Labor representatives to discuss best practices
          • Meetings are open to everyone – contact Lisa Lord to receive an invitation
        • Resources – provide recovery coaches, ongoing education and trainings, and local connections to the employers and the employees in recovery
        • Celebration – formal group membership, awards, swag, and digital logos to celebrate recovery and status as a recovery friendly workplace
      • Breaking down stigma is a driving theme behind all VT Recovery tools and resources
      • Recovery Friendly Workplaces 101 training is August 5th, 12pm – 12:45pm
  • Adjourn

    • No committee meeting in July
    • August meeting will be hybrid – updates will be provided

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