January 9, 2019 Media, Press Releases

Norcross, Kuster, Kaptur, Lead Call to Speaker Pelosi & Leader Hoyer to Prioritize Policies to Tackle the Opioid Epidemic in the New Congress

January 9, 2019

Today, Representatives Donald Norcross (NJ-01), Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Marcy Kaptur (OH-09) are leading more than sixty of their colleagues in calling on Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer to prioritize policies that will help tackle the opioid epidemic. A recent report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found a dramatic increase in deaths nationally due to synthetic opioids such as fentanyl and increases in overdose deaths in many of the hardest hit states.

“Over 3,000 people died from overdoses in New Jersey in 2018 – and, sadly, that’s a new record. Every single year we’re losing more Americans to the opioid epidemic than we did in all of the Vietnam War. It’s clear we need to work together, address the many different aspects of this crisis and implement a variety of tactics to help those suffering from the disease of addiction,” said Congressman Donald Norcross, Vice-Chair of the Bipartisan Task Force to Combat the Opioid Epidemic. “We took positive steps in the last Congress to help our friends and neighbors. Now, we need to build upon those successes and vote to increase mental health and addiction funding because one preventable death is too many.”

“I’m proud of our efforts to support those on the frontlines of the opioid crisis, but our work is not done,” said Congresswoman Annie Kuster, Chair of the Bipartisan Task Force to Combat the Opioid Epidemic. “In the 116th Congress, I’m committed to building on our success and continuing to advance policies that will save lives and rebuild communities. It’s imperative that Speaker Pelosi and Leader Hoyer prioritize this issue and empower the new Congress to take additional action to address the opioid epidemic.”

“Despite previous Congressional efforts to provide more resources to combat the opioid crisis to states and communities across this nation, there is much more to do,” said Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur. “The opioid epidemic must be a top priority for the 116th Congress, as we demonstrate our commitment to innovative solutions and creative resources to counter this complex crisis. To build on local, regional, or state successes, it is vital we prioritize substantial and comprehensive measures and strategies. Democratic Leadership in the House has shown early attention to these matters and we look forward to an aggressive agenda.”

Read more…