Congresswoman Martha McSally

Representing the 2nd District of Arizona

McSally Leads Effort to Secure Resources to Combat Opioid Epidemic

March 12, 2018
Press Release
Urges Appropriators to Set Aside Billions in Budget to Stop Deadly Drug Crisis in High-Mortality Populations

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Representative Martha McSally is leading other members of Congress in urging House appropriators to allocate billions of the budget to address the opioid crisis that has hit Arizona communities especially hard. Pima County in the Congresswoman’s district had 356 overdoses in 2016, a rate almost twice as high as any other county in Arizona. According to the Arizona Department of Health Services, 790 Arizonans died from opioid overdoses in 2016. In the letter, the legislators requested the funds be targeted towards those areas most in need of assistance.

“It is clear that we must redouble our efforts to stop this disastrous and heartbreaking problem that is wreaking havoc on our communities and kills an average of 115 Americans every single day,” the lawmakers write. “We are encouraged to hear that H.R. 1892 provides room for the appropriation of an additional few billion dollars for Fiscal Years 2018 and 2019 to continue the fight against the opioid crisis and improve mental health care. We ask that you target the funds towards those populations most in need including states with the highest per-capita overdose mortality rates, as well as tribal and rural areas.”

Overdose deaths in Arizona increased by an alarming 74 percent over the past four years. The number of Americans killed by drug overdoses nearly doubled in the last decade.

Congresswoman McSally has consistently been a leader in the fight against opioid addictions, applauding the administration for declaring the opioid crisis a nationwide public health emergency last fall, spearheading legislation signed by the President, and voting for an increase of $781 million for fighting the opioid epidemic. Last Congress, Congresswoman McSally worked to include provisions in the 21st Century Cures Act that provide resources and training to law enforcement on the frontlines of dealing with this crisis. Additionally, Congress passed the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act with Congresswoman McSally’s support, to offer grants, treatment and prevention, and support for law enforcement in communities around the nation to combat this crisis.

Click HERE to see below for the full text of the letter.

 

 

The Honorable Tom Cole                                                       

Chairman                                                                                

Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human                        

Services, Education, and Related Agencies                          

2358-B Rayburn House Office Building 
Washington, DC 20515                                                    

The Honorable Rosa DeLauro

Ranking Member

Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human

Services, Education, and Related Agencies

1016 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

 

Dear Chairman Cole and Ranking Member De Lauro,

In light of the recent passage of H.R. 1892, the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, we write to express our strong support for the inclusion of potentially billions of dollars in additional resources to combat the opioid crisis. With the number of Americans killed by drug overdoses nearly doubling in the last decade, it is clear that we must redouble our efforts to stop this disastrous and heartbreaking problem that is wreaking havoc on our communities and kills an average of 115 Americans every single day.[1] That means this crisis claims nearly as many American lives in one year as the entire Korean War.

As you are aware, the 21st Century Cures Act contained almost $1 billion in funding for the State Targeted Response to the Opioid Crisis Grants to help fight the opioid crisis. While these grants have begun to make a difference in our communities, we want to build on this effort. We are encouraged to hear in discussions that H.R. 1892 provides room for the appropriation of an additional few billion dollars for Fiscal Years 2018 and 2019 to continue the fight against the opioid crisis and improve mental health care. We want to ensure that these funds are appropriated and specifically targeted towards the areas and populations in the most need of assistance.

Despite recent efforts to target resources to those most in need, Native Americans and native Alaskans who had 500% increase in overdose deaths—have been left out of the conversation.[2] As you begin to appropriate the much needed additional funds to fight the opioid crisis, we ask that you target the funds towards those populations most in need including states with the highest per-capita overdose mortality rates, as well as tribal and rural areas. Please make sure that your appropriations legislation clearly states that these funds must be targeted to the areas and populations who need it most.

Sincerely,

 

 

Martha McSally

Member of Congress

 

 

Mike Bishop

Member of Congress

 

John J. Faso

Member of Congress

 

Claudia Tenney

Member of Congress

 

Paul A. Gosar D.D.S.

Member of Congress

 

Sean P. Duffy

Member of Congress

 

John Katko

Member of Congress

 

Ted Budd

Member of Congress

 

Luke Messer

Member of Congress

 

Chris Collins

Member of Congress

 

Keith J. Rothfus

Member of Congress

 

Elise M. Stefanik

Member of Congress

 

Kevin Cramer

Member of Congress

 

 

 

 

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