ISSUE 77 | September 8, 2020
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From Around the Region and the State
Economic and Policy News
County Cares Commission discusses program that helps young adults at risk
The County Cares Commission in Luzerne County is discussing Pennsylvania CareerLink’s REAL Reentry program, which supports young adults who are at risk of substance use, criminal behavior, or homelessness.

Specifically, the program serves justice-involved adults aged 18 through 24, to help them avoid recidivism and overcome barriers to employment. 

PA rehabs buckle, begin to close under COVID-19 strain
The economic effects of the pandemic may cause a large number of Pennsylvania’s drug and alcohol treatment facilities to close – unless they receive additional support.

Advocates and officials have warned that these facilities have not received dedicated relief funding.

Furthermore, the cost of providing treatment has increased and overdose deaths have become more common since the onset of the pandemic. 

State to allow 'compassionate caregivers' in nursing homes
The Pennsylvania Department of Health has announced that the state will allow family members of some nursing home residents to serve as compassionate caregivers.

According to Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine, compassionate caregivers can be important for improving residents’ physical, mental, and emotional health. 

From Around the Nation and the Globe
Economic and Policy News
CDC issues sweeping temporary halt on evictions 
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have ordered a nationwide ban on evictions in order to prevent further spread of COVID-19.

This action is intended to delay the mass evictions that have become likely due to high unemployment and inability to pay rent.

The new moratorium does not include support for landlords, however, and there is no guarantee that households will be able to afford back rent when it expires.

Momentum for reform wavers amid spike in opioid overdoses
In recent months, regions in the United States and Canada have reported growing rates of opioid overdose deaths.

In some areas, overdose deaths have exceeded deaths from COVID-19.

As public health priorities have shifted to address the pandemic, momentum may have been lost on plans to reduce harm from opioid addiction. 

Evidence suggests alternative credentials are on the rise
Recent evidence suggests that COVID-19 has accelerated the development of alternative career pathways such as non-degree programs that offer apprenticeship opportunities or online certificates.

Interest in these types of programs has grown among students, employers, and policymakers.

Some experts expect this trend to continue beyond the pandemic. 

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