The state launched a new program Wednesday to help New Yorkers struggling with substance abuse get access to addiction services.
Under the program, more than $190,000 in funding was awarded to East Harlem addiction treatment providers — Odyssey House and Mount Sinai Behavioral Health System.
The money will be used for a new peer engagement specialist.
It allows recovering addicts to conduct outreach, refer people to treatment services and provide information about drugs.
"One of the pillars of drug treatment is having people who are in recovery, who've been through struggle to go and engage others," said Peter Provet, President and CEO of Odyssey House. "We have an expression that in order to keep it, meaning one's own recovery you have to give it away, and so the peer specialists have a certain commitment that's unique."
Drug abuse advocates estimate about 24,000 people in East Harlem are battling addiction.