The Cook Inlet Council on Drug and Alcohol Abuse, or CICADA, has expanded hours at its Homer satellite office. The Kenai-based non-profit hired one part-time provider in late-September, expanding its out-patient services to five days per week.
In the past, CICADA has staffed the Homer location with providers from Kenai just two days per week. Executive Director Sara Fann said the move is just the first step to provide more services on the southern peninsula.
“We’re looking at 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., five days a week. However, we’d like to build up the program and possibly justify a full-time position in the future,” she explained. “We may be altering her hours so she can attend community meetings and start working with referral sources.”
Sue Fallon, a psychologist, is taking over the Homer office. She has primarily worked in addiction education, but Fallon does have experience with the addiction treatment field.
CICADA provides both addiction and mental health assessments on top of its in-patient services. Fann said expanded hours will also provide more opportunities for patients needing to be referred to in-patient facilities. The Homer office will also be able to serve those with a dual diagnosis.
Fann said CICADA wanted to increase its presence in the community due to a shrinking clientele base. Historically, most of CICADA’s clients have come from the criminal justice system.
Fann said that after the Legislature passed sweeping criminal justice reform, known as Senate Bill 91, in 2016, requirements for those with drug offenses to seek treatment became too relaxed.
“They generally have some sort of enforcement pushing them to receive treatment services with some sort of consequences if they have not, and now consequence have kind of disappeared in certain cases, which has brought our numbers down,” Fann said. “Also, I think because we weren’t there five days per week with that kind of presence, some of the referrals didn’t come in our direction and hopefully we can reestablish those referral sources.”
Fann said CICADA will continue with part-time hours five days per week for now. She did not say when the non-profit may staff the Homer office full-time.