140+ Organizations Send Letter in Support of ONDCP Programs

March 15, 2018 | Addiction Policy Forum


the White House

Today more than 140 organizations sent a letter to Senate and House Appropriations Leadership in support of key addiction programs belonging to the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). Read the letter in its entirety below: 
Dear Chairman, and Ranking Member:

We the undersigned represent the major groups across all disciplines working on a comprehensive response to the drug crisis facing our nation, to include prevention, treatment, recovery supports, medicine, overdose reversal, law enforcement, and criminal justice reform.

As you know, the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) oversees and manages the Drug Free Communities (DFC) and the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) programs. DFCs provide critical drug prevention funding directly to community coalitions capable of reducing youth drug use, while the mission of the HIDTA program is to disrupt the market for illegal drugs by dismantling or disrupting drug trafficking organizations through the coordinated efforts of federal, state, and local law enforcement.

We sincerely appreciate the recent commitment by Congress and the Administration to invest significant taxpayer dollars to address our nation’s drug crisis. However, we write to convey our serious concerns with the Administration’s proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2019, which would effectively dismantle ONDCP at a time when it is needed the most.

Included in the President’s budget is a proposal that will cut ONDCP’s budget by a staggering ninety-seven percent in Fiscal Year 2019 by moving the DFC and HIDTA programs to other federal agencies. Under the proposal, the DFC program would be moved to SAMHSA and funded out of SAMHSA’s existing substance use prevention budget, thus cutting already scarce federal funding for substance use prevention by $100 million. Similarly, the HIDTA program would be overseen by the Drug Enforcement Administration. We strongly oppose any attempt to move either the DFC or HIDTA programs out of ONDCP.

The DFC program is the only federal drug prevention program that goes directly to communities to deal with all of their most pressing local drug issues. It is unique, in that it requires participation of all community sectors, across the supply - demand reduction split to plan, implement and evaluate locally tailored comprehensive strategies capable of dealing with the full range of drug issues and trends, including opioids, meth, and synthetics. The program requires a local match in order to leverage all available resources. The DFC program has a consistent track record in greatly reducing youth drug use in funded communities to levels lower than national averages through its data driven, comprehensive, multi-sector approach. Moving the DFC program out of ONDCP would reduce its effectiveness by markedly limiting the full range of essential partners, to include local law enforcement, needed to continue to achieve the impressive population level reductions in youth drug use rates. It would also undermine the robust data collection and evaluation components of the program, which are fully managed and funded by ONDCP.

The HIDTA program is an essential component of the National Drug Control Strategy. It is clear that federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement plays an integral role in a balanced strategy to reduce drug misuse and its harmful consequences. The HIDTA program enhances and coordinates federal, state, local, and tribal anti-drug misuse efforts from a local, regional, and national perspective, leveraging resources at all levels in a true partnership. The HIDTA program gives federal, state, local and tribal criminal justice leaders a balanced and equal voice in identifying the regional threat, developing a strategy, investing in the strategy, and assessing performance. This unique feature of the HIDTA program creates the ability for each HIDTA to quickly, effectively, and efficiently adapt to emerging threats that may be unique to a given region providing for the greatest level of impact. Moving the HIDTA program out of ONDCP would all but eliminate the balanced voice found in the long-standing law enforcement partnerships, and the many other innovative approaches that are essential components of an effective drug policy.

Not only would such a move drastically weaken these vitally important programs, and force them to compete for priority, direction, and funding in larger agencies with competing and higher priorities, but it would significantly impact ONDCP’s ability to effectively carry out its mission. ONDCP oversees federal efforts to combat every drug problem facing our nation, to include the opioid overdose epidemic, methamphetamines, synthetic drugs, cocaine, marijuana, etc., by coordinating all federal agencies responsible for reducing drug trafficking and misuse and ensuring their adherence to the President’s priorities. No other agency has this unique responsibility to coordinate efforts across the federal government to execute one shared drug strategy. This oversight is instrumental in eliminating waste and fraud by preventing duplicative programs and strategies among the various federal agencies. Cutting ONDCP’s budget would significantly harm the effectiveness of this unique mission.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 63,600 Americans died of a drug overdose in 2016, a staggering 21 percent increase from 2015. With 174 people dying from drug overdose each day there is no doubt the drug epidemic is an urgent and serious problem impacting families across our nation. The President’s budget proposal would create an unnecessary distraction at a time when the federal government should be focused on saving lives. We urge you to continue to allow the ONDCP to use its expertise to administer these programs with its full funding intact. 

  1. A New Path

  2. Addiction Policy Forum

  3. Advocates for Recovery Colorado

  4. Alano Club of Portland

  5. American Psychiatric Association

  6. American Society of Addiction Medicine

  7. Apricity

  8. Arizona Council of Human Services Providers

  9. Association for Behavioral Healthcare (Massachusetts)

  10. Association of Persons Affected by Addiction

  11. Association of State Criminal Investigative Agencies

  12. Bangor Area Recovery Network, Inc.

  13. CADA of Northwest Louisiana

  14. California Consortium of Addiction Programs & Professionals

  15. Captial Area Project V ox

  16. Caron Treatment Centers

  17. Center for Recovery and Wellness Resources

  18. CFC Loud N Clear Foundation

  19. Chicago Recovering Communities Coalition

  20. College on Problems of Drug Dependence

  21. Communities for Recovery

  22. Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America

  23. Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery

  24. DarJune Recovery Support Services & Cafe

  25. Davis Direction Foundation - The Zone

  26. DC Recovery Community Alliance

  27. Dekalb Open Opportunity for Recovery (The DOOR)

  28. Detroit Recovery Project, Inc.

  29. Drug Free America Foundation, Inc.

  30. Drug Free Projects Coalition

  31. El Paso Alliance

  32. Faces and V oices of Recovery

  33. FAVOR Grand Strand

  34. FAVOR Greenville

  35. FAVOR Low Country

  36. FAVOR Mississippi Recovery Advocacy Project

  37. FAVOR Pee Dee

  38. FAVOR Tri-County

  39. Fellowship Foundation Recovery Community Organization

  40. Florida Coalition Alliance

  41. Floridians for Recovery

  42. Foundation for Recovery

  43. Friends of Recovery - New York

  44. Georgia Council on Substance Abuse

  45. Greater Macomb Project V ox (Michigan)

  46. HOPE for New Hampshire Recovery

  47. IC&RC

  48. Illinois Association for Behavioral Health

  49. Institute for Behavior and Health, Inc

  50. Iowa Behavioral Health Association

  51. Jackson Area Recovery Community (Michigan)

  52. Juneau Recovery Community

  53. Latah Recovery Center

  54. Legal Action Center

  55. Lifehouse Recovery Connection

  56. Live4Lali, Inc.

  57. Long Island Recovery Association

  58. Lost Dreams Awaken Center, Inc.

  59. Lotus Peer Recovery/SoberKerryville

  60. Maine Alliance for Addiction Recovery

  61. Masschusetts Organization for Addiction Recovery

  62. Message Carriers of Pennsylvania, Inc.

  63. Minnesota Recovery Connection

  64. Missouri Recovery Network

  65. National Alliance of State Drug Enforcement Agencies

  66. National Association for Children of Addiction

  67. National Association for Rural Mental Health

  68. National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers

  69. National Association of County Behavioral Health and Developmental Disability Directors

  70. National Association of Social Workers

  71. National Council for Behavioral Health

  72. National Criminal Justice Association

  73. National District Attorneys Association

  74. National Families in Action

  75. National HIDTA Directors Association

  76. National Narcotic Officers’ Associations’ Coalition

  77. National Safety Council

  78. Navigate Recovery Gwinnett (Georgia)

  79. Navigating Recovery of the Lakes Region (New Hampshire)

  80. Northern Ohio Recovery Association

  81. NYS Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare

  82. Oklahoma Citizen Advocates for Recovery and Treatment Association

  83. Partnership for Drug-Free Kids

  84. PEER 360 Recovery Alliance

  85. Peer Coach Academy Colorado

  86. Pennsylvania Recovery Organization - Achieving Community Together

  87. Pennsylvania Recovery Organizations Alliance

  88. People Advocating Recovery

  89. Phoenix Multisport Boston

  90. PLR Athens

  91. Portland Recovery Community Center

  92. Prevention Alliance of Tennessee

  93. RASE Project

  94. REAL - Michigan (Recovery, Education, Advocacy & Leadership)

  95. Recover Project/Western MA Training

  96. Recover Wyoming

  97. Recovery Allies of West Michigan

  98. RecoveryATX

  99. Recovery Cafe

100. Recovery Communities of North Carolina

101. Recovery Community of Durham

102. Recovery Consultants of Atlanta

103. Recovery Data Solutions

104. Recovery Epicenter Foundation, Inc.

105. Recovery Force of Atlantic County

106. Recovery is Happening

107. Recovery Organization of Support Specialists

108. Rhode Island Communities for Addiction Recovery Efforts

109. Rochester Recovery Community Center

110. ROCovery Fitness

111. Safe Harbor Recovery Center - Granite Pathways

112. Save Our Society From Drugs

113. Smart Approaches to Marijuana Action (SAM Action)

114. SMART Recovery

115. Solano Recovery Project

116. Solutions Recovery, Inc.

117. SOS Recovery Community Organization

118. SpiritWorks Foundation

119. Springs Recovery Connection

120. Strengthening the Mid-Atlantic Region for Tomorrow

121. The Bridge Foundation

122. The Kennedy Forum

123. The McShin Foundation

124. The Moyer Foundation

125. The Rosenthal Center

126. The Serenity House of Flint

127. Tia Hart Recovery Community Program

128. T.O.R.C.H Inc.

129. Trilogy Recovery Community

130. Treatment Alternatives for Safe Communities (TASC) - Illinois

131. Treatment Communities of America

132. United Mental Health and Addictions Recovery Coalition

133. Utah Support Advocates for Recovery Awareness

134. Vermont Recovery Network

135. Virginia Association of Recovery Residences

136. Voices of Hope for Cecil County (Maryland)

137. Voices of Hope Lexington

138. WAI-IAM, Inc. and RISE Recovery Community

139. Washtenaw Recovery Advocacy Project

140. WestCare Foundation, Inc.

141. Wisconsin Recovery Community Organization

142. Wisconsin Voices for Recovery