Data shows that Vermont now has fewer substance abuse counselors than more than a year ago when the governor made growing the number of counselors a priority.
Republican Gov. Phil Scott's administration had previously simplified the state licensing process to become a substance abuse counselor to meet the shortage of professionals to treat people struggling with addiction. The Burlington Free Press reports Scott estimated in October 2017 that Vermont needed at least 100 more counselors to add to then-current number of 693 counselors.
As of Feb. 26 and about one month after all state licenses expired unless renewed, the state is down to 586 total active counselors.
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The Scott administration has partnered with local colleges to prepare more people for licensure.