Your Community Cares Rural Health Coalition is hosting a free one-day conference two days in September for community members to learn about opioids and the workforce.

There are 57.8 million Americans diagnosed with a mental and substance misuse disorder and contrary to popular belief more than 70 percent of those misusing substances in America are employed according to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. 

At a time when workforce development is cited as a top concern for businesses, an individual who fails a drug test for the first time is as likely to be terminated; leaving a shortage of workforce. In addition to higher absenteeism and lower job productivity and performance, the workforce has additional costs for health care expenses for injuries and illnesses. 

It is essential that employers understand the science of addiction, it's prevalence among working adults, and how they can be connected to the prevention, treatment and recovery communities to support their employees. Employers may save up to $2,607 per worker annually by assisting and supporting employees with treatment according to the National Safety Council.  

Speakers will assist businesses in building solutions to the opioid epidemic in their workplace and community. At the same time, this provides an opportunity for individuals to gain or retain the employment they need as part of their recovery. The conference will feature local businesses and persons with lived experience that recognize the value of seeking treatment and supporting recovery.

Conference Line-up

The first conference is at the Salem Community Center on Sept. 10 

From 9:30 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. at 1200 W Rolla St, Salem, MO 65560

The second conference is at Cuba Knights of Columbus on Sept. 24 

From 9:30 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. at 7057 Old 66, Cuba, MO 


Conference Agenda and Speakers List 

Session 1 - Defining the crisis of opioid use and why its impact on the workforce matters along with the economic impact of addiction on individuals, businesses, and the community. 

Scott Breedlove Missouri Credentialing Board

Rachel Winograd Missouri Institute of Mental Health

Shawn Billings Missouri Hospital Association 

Doug Swanson Mizzou Extension 


Session 2 – Describing examples of pathways of treatment and steps that can be taken to bring people in recovery successfully back into the workforce. Discussion of how business leader’s help an employee who has a substance use disorder. 

Chad Sabora Missouri Network for Opiate Reform and Recovery

Dr. Sean Sibert Invent Yourself, LLC 

Shaun Burke CPC Alcoholics/Addicts Victorious


Session 3 – Discussion how businesses are a recovery friendly workplace. Review sample example of administration guidance that provide a second chance concept in hiring and retaining employees. 

Phil Cohen & Alan Redburn Cohen Architectural Woodworking

Ron Benge Pallet Lumber Express

Chris Haslag CHAP Construction and Remodeling LLC

Sundi Jo Graham Central Workforce Development Board & Peer Support Specialist


For more information or to register for the conference please contact Felisha Richards at 573-426-6033 or