BOSTON – The Massachusetts State Senate on Wednesday unanimously passed a $46 billion budget for Fiscal Year 2021 (FY21). Included in the budget was an amendment offered by Senator Patrick O’Connor (R-Weymouth) to secure $100,000 of funding for One Life at a Time to support their work providing comprehensive employment assistance and job training to individuals in recovery.
O’Connor and his colleagues, Senator Keenan (D-Quincy) and Senator Timilty (D-Milton), recently visited the organization’s facility in Braintree to get a better understanding of their program offerings and the work they do.
“That visit was truly eye-opening - One Life at a Time and their staff are truly dedicated to lifting up those who have been impacted by addiction and giving them an opportunity to take the next step in their recovery,” said Senator O’Connor. “To date, they’ve helped over 18,000 people from all walks of life successfully rejoin the workforce and I am proud to support this organization and the thousands of people their work is yet to benefit.”
In a statement, One Life at a Time Executive Director, Christine O’Neill, detailed which programs the funding will support and their goals moving forward.
“At One Life at a Time, our Career Recovery Program is an innovative employment training and addiction recovery program with the goal of increasing the self-esteem, self-worth, and sense of self-sufficiency of adults in active recovery from substance use disorder. Our program includes: Four weeks of proven successful, career and job placement training; Career Development and Job Placement assistance; Professional counseling from a Licensed Clinical Social Worker; Recovery coaching from a Certified Recovery Coach and Licensed Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor; Financial assistance with sober home rent, transportation, and living expenses, on an as needed basis; and 2+ years of job retention, housing, and recovery support. Our goals for the future are to offer access to a full curriculum of services including an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) to go along with our employment and recovery services. Without the support of Senator Patrick O’Connor our goals and the work we do at One Life at a Time would not be possible, and we are incredibly grateful for his support.”
“One Life at a Time is a lifeline to so many in our neighborhoods,” said Peter Thompson, a local community advocate. “Although COVID-19 has been everyone’s main focus over the past few months, the addiction crisis hasn’t gone away and we need to remain vigilant in our efforts. Senator O’Connor actually listens and understands what an important part of the community this program is and how critical the services they offer are.”
O’Connor’s amendment was also cosponsored by Senator Keenan and Senator Timilty who each represent a part of Braintree where One Life at a Time is based.
“During my recent visit to One Life at a Time, I saw the incredible work being done with those in early recovery, assisting them with recovery coaching, job seeking skills, and housing,” said Senator Keenan. “I thank Sen. O'Connor, am proud to have co-sponsored this amendment, and look forward to seeing One Life at a Time's good work continue.”
“I had the privilege of seeing first-hand the critical needs that One Life at a Time fulfills for those that are in recovery,” said Senator Timilty. “These individuals are choosing to take the necessary steps to better their lives and their careers. It is clear that One Life at a Time provides a critical support system for those in recovery to maintain a healthy lifestyle and retain employment. I am grateful to Senator O’Connor for spearheading the effort to secure this $100,000 so that One Life at a Time can continue their crucial mission.”
One Life at a Time’s mission is to provide comprehensive employment assistance and job training to individuals in recovery. Current program and work shop offerings include job search strategies, interviewing skills, Microsoft Office applications, remote and tele-work preparation, and much more, with additional workshops added regularly. For more information about One Life at a Time, please visit www.1lifeatatime.org.
The Senate’s FY21 budget will move to Conference Committee where three members of the House and three members of the Senate will work out the differences between the House and Senate budgets. As the Ranking Minority Member of Senate Ways and Means, Senator O’Connor will be one of the six legislators responsible for negotiating the legislature’s final version of the budget.
Senator Patrick O’Connor represents the Plymouth and Norfolk district, which includes the towns of Cohasset, Duxbury, Hingham, Hull, Marshfield, Norwell, Scituate, and Weymouth. Sen. O’Connor and his staff may be reached at the State House at 617-722-1646 or by email at Patrick.O’[email protected].