The White House recently rolled out a new tool to help local leaders in rural areas respond
effectively to the opioid epidemic. The State of Tennessee has been at the forefront of the
the rural opioid crisis and both Fourth Judicial District Circuit Court Judge Duane Slone and
Administrative Office of the Courts Director Deborah Taylor Tate attended the Rural
Community Action Guide’s official launch event in Washington, D.C.

The Rural Community Action Guide discusses the unique challenges that rural communities
face in confronting the epidemic and contains a number of recommendations for community
stakeholders looking to develop new and creative ways to address the issue. Many of these
recommendations are based on the real-world examples of local leaders who have taken
innovative steps to fight the epidemic.

Judge Slone has proven to be a leader in the struggle against the opioid crisis on both the
local and national stages. His groundbreaking Tennessee Recovery Oriented Compliance
Strategy (TN ROCS), a diversionary program geared toward those with substance use
disorders who may not qualify for traditional recovery courts, has had enormous success in
his East Tennessee community and has proven highly influential nationwide. TN ROCS
features prominently in the Rural Community Action Guide as a model solution that can have
a significant impact

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August 7, 2021 • 12:00PM


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