Collaboration and coordination among a community’s stakeholders are essential for mounting an effective response to opioid addiction and misuse.
Collaboration can be facilitated by forming coalitions and task forces, many of which are currently operational in communities across the US. These community groups, often formed independently of any single lead agency, and often as a grass-roots initiative, have been widely implemented in response to the opioid crisis.
Primary objectives usually include:
- raising awareness about opioid addiction
- providing information on prevention, treatment, and recovery resources offered by local stakeholders
- undertaking initiatives to combat this public health emergency
Coalitions typically host forums for community members and agencies to learn about the impact of opioids and plan initiatives in response.
Task forces, like coalitions, facilitate community-wide collaboration, but frequently involve a lead agency with primary responsibility for convening stakeholders and managing initiatives.
Stakeholders are potential participants in a community-wide response to the opioid problem. Response often draws from a wide range of stakeholders.
Interagency collaboration to address opioid abuse may involve modifying or expanding a stakeholder’s mission to mesh effectively with that of other agencies. For example, a police department might assist users of illicit opioids to find treatment, avoiding the stigma of arrest.
Is there a coalition or task force is already underway in your community? Scanning the stakeholder list below may suggest additional partners whose capacities can be tapped to widen your response.
Are you interested in initiating a coalition or task force? Use the stakeholder lists below as a resource.
- Emergency Dept.
- Fire Dept.
- Police Dept.
- Recovery peers and public trained in naloxone administration
- Emergency Depts.
- Health and Behavioral Health Depts
- Police Dept.
- Diversion programs
- Boards (e.g., medical, dental, pharmacy)
- Public and private secondary schools, high schools
- Colleges and universities
- Medical schools
- Churches, synagogues, mosques, etc.
- Family and children
- Community development
- Homelessness agencies
- Local businesses
- Local govt agencies
- Local NGOs
- Local papers and online news services
People who use drugs
Peers in recovery
Community Coalition Action Theory