Take Action: Urge your Senators to Take Immediate Action on Passing the Opioid Package

August 8, 2018 | Addiction Policy Forum

We applaud the House of Representatives for their leadership in passing the Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act (H.R. 6) this past June. This comprehensive, bipartisan legislation contains many critical components that will have an immediate and positive impact in states and communities nationwide to better address our country’s drug crisis in a meaningful way.

As attention turns to the Senate, we ask for the quick passage of complementary, bipartisan legislation to be made an utmost priority this Congress. Such legislation will go a long way towards improving our country’s ability to implement a comprehensive response, help prevent, treat, and support communities impacted by addiction nationwide and ultimately save lives.

Among the proposals being considered by the Senate, the Addiction Policy Forum strongly supports the quick enactment of the following legislation:  

  • Opioid Crisis Response Act (OCRA) of 2018 (S. 2680): Authored by Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Patty Murray (D-WA), this legislation would, among other things:
    • Improve first responders ability to assist individuals who have overdosed;
    • Expand support services to help patients achieve long-term recovery;
    • Provide resources to operate substance use disorder (SUD) treatment and recovery centers;
    • Educate doctors on how to prevent, detect, and treat SUD; and
    • Expand the use of technology services for the treatment of additional SUD patients.

Learn more about OCRA here.

  • Substance Abuse Prevention Act of 2018 (S. 2789): Authored by Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), this legislation would reauthorize crucial substance use prevention programs and provides assistance to federal agencies to better address our nation’s drug crisis. Specifically, this legislation would:
    • Reauthorize the Office of National Drug Control Policy at the White House, which includes the Drug Free Communities and High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area programs;
    • Reauthorizes the Department of Justice funding for drug courts;
    • Improve collaboration between Drug Enforcement Administration and healthcare and community organizations working on the front lines of the drug crisis; and
    • Provide resources to protect families with SUD parents.

Learn more about the bill here.

  • SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act (H.R. 6): Introduced by Representatives Greg Walden (R-OR), Kevin Brady (R-TX),Frank Pallone (D-NJ), and Richard Neal (D-MA), this legislation includes more than fifty different proposals that address and improves resources in areas of prevention, treatment, recovery, overdose reversal, research, law enforcement, veterans, and child welfare, and other key aspects of a comprehensive response needed to address the drug crisis.

Check out our 27 Things You Should Know About The House Opioid Package by clicking here.

To see the full list of provision in H.R. 6 click here.

The Senate has a tight legislative schedule over the next couple of months which is why this legislation must be made a priority to ensure fewer lives are lost to a preventable and treatable disease that is devastating communities across the United States.

Join us in urging the Senate to take immediate action on passing these critical pieces of legislation.

Contact your Senators today by clicking here.

The Addiction Policy Forum is currently circulating a group sign-on letter urging the Senate to act quickly on passing such meaningful legislation.

To read the Addiction Policy Forum’s letter of support click here.

If your organization is interested in signing on to this letter, please contact Braeden Kelly at bkelly@addictionpolicy.org.

Topics: Advocacy