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Indiana Workforce Recovery has educated 3,000 business leaders
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Indiana Workforce Recovery has educated 3,000 business leaders

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The Indiana Workforce Recovery initiative has provided education to about 3,000 business leaders and distributed more than 40,000 prescription disposal kits since it was launched last year to help tackle Indiana's drug and opioid epidemic.

“That translates to more than 1.8 million unused prescription medications no longer being on the shelves of Hoosiers — and possibly misused,” Indiana Workforce Recovery Director Mike Thibideau said. 

The partnership between the Indiana Chamber of Commerce, Wellness Council of Indiana and Gov. Eric Holcomb’s administration has gotten $50,000 in grants from the Rx Abuse Leadership Initiative, a coalition of business leaders, patient groups and other health care stakeholders, to pass out the kits to businesses statewide.

“We are thrilled to continue our partnership with the Indiana Chamber and Wellness Council of Indiana to address addiction in the workplace,” RALI Indiana spokesperson Emily Wilson said. “Safe drug disposal education can help stop many Hoosiers from misusing medications before they ever start, and because of Indiana Workforce Recovery, employers and employees across the state have the resources and support they need to fight this epidemic.”

Indiana Workforce Recovery has been working with employers across the state to help workers recover from drug dependency, providing information to thousands of executives and human resources professionals across Indiana.

“It's not that people don’t care about their families, jobs and all they did before substance misuse," Thibideau said. "It’s that their brains have been retrained to need the feeling that drugs provide. The good news is that damage can be undone, and the long-term success rate for an individual in recovery is much greater if their employer is engaged on their behalf.”

Indiana Workforce Recovery offers businesses a full-day strategic session that cover policies and legal aspects for returning employees dealing with drug dependency issues. It also offers educational videos and state guidelines that provide a blueprint for employers to follow in such situations.

For more information, visit www.indianachamber.com/recovery.

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.

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