Advocacy Alert: New Jersey Recovery Residences, Hepatitis C testing, and Drug Testing of Inmates

October 25, 2018

NJ A 3607: Recovery Residence Credentialing

On March 12, 2018, Representative Vincent Mazzeo and two other Democrats introduced A 3607.

The bill, if passed, would create a voluntary certification plan for recovery housing in the state, similar to the system currently used in Florida. This bill specifies standards set by the National Alliance for Recovery Residences (NARR). It exempts certified homes from recently-enacted legislation that mandates licensure for recovery housing other than Oxford Houses as boarding homes, with 10-bed resident caps.

On October 18, 2018, the bill was reported out of the Assembly Human Services Committee with amendments, and referred to the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

BHAP supports this bill. It would reduce unwarranted restrictions on recovery residences while encouraging recovery residences to operate within ethical NARR standards.

We encourage those that operate in New Jersey to reach out to your representative and express your support of A 3607.

NJ S 1133: Hepatitis C Testing for Clients of Drug Abuse Treatment Centers

On January 25, 2018, Senator Anthony R. Bucco introduced S 1133.

The bill, if passed, would amend P.L. 1970, c 334, and require narcotic and drug abuse treatment centers to offer Hepatitis C testing to clients. It would also offer pre-testing counseling. It would take effect on the first day of the seventh month following the date of enactment.

BHAP opposes this bill. This bill would add costs to providers for every patient coming through their door when only a small percentage of clients admitted would need this service.

We encourage those that operate in New Jersey to reach out to your representative and express your opposition to S 1133.

NJ S 842: Random Drug Testing of Certain Inmates

On January 9, 2018, Senator Shirley Turner introduced S 842.

The bill is a carryover of S 658, and concerns random drug testing of certain inmates. It would allow random drug testing of all state inmates in residential community release programs, including halfway houses. It also defines a residential community release program, and specifically requires the commissioner to supply drug testing kits.

The bill was referred to the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee on January 25, 2018.

BHAP supports this bill. The Department of Corrections is paying for this testing, and it helps the provider identify individuals who are continuing to use illicit substances.

We encourage those that operate in New Jersey to reach out to your representative and express your support of S 658.

For more information on the current laws governing treatment programs and sober living facilities in New Jersey, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions for the state.

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