News from Representative Tom Emmer

Dear Friend, 

In 2016 there were more drug overdose deaths than there are names on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall. In Minnesota, hundreds of families have lost, and continue to lose, loved ones to addiction. As a father, a neighbor, a coach, a friend, I have seen firsthand the impact opioids have on a community.

We are in the midst of the worst drug crisis this nation has ever seen. Addiction has ravaged our communities. We are losing our sons and daughters; brother and sisters; mothers and fathers; colleagues and neighbors; friends and loved ones.

Congress’ efforts to combat the ongoing crisis began by passing the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), which I was proud to cosponsor, and the 21st Century Cures Act, which I also supported. These efforts were just a first step in a long journey. This week, the House is set to take another step by voting on more than 30 bills addressing the opioid crisis.

While they won’t solve this crisis overnight, these changes could save countless livesAmong other changes, the legislation will:

  • Require federal agencies to inform our nation’s pharmacists when to decline a prescription for opioids.
  • Establish a publicly accessible collection of strategies to combat the opioid crisis and improve collaboration.
  • Provide lists to states of best practices for facilities to assist addiction recovery.
  • Direct the National Institutes of Health to research non-addictive pain medications.
  • Stop unlawful importation and distribution of deadly synthetic drugs like fentanyl. 

Our nation’s addiction crisis will not be solved by one law, one pill, one billion dollars, one program, one doctor, or one system. Fighting the crisis begins with all of us - Congress, health care professionals, addiction counselors, families and loved ones of those affected, and communities around the country - coming together to find the solutions that will end this epidemic. 

Share your thoughts on how Congress can turn the tide on this crisis by writing to me here and be sure to follow me on Facebook and Twitter.


P.S. In April, I spoke at the MARRCH Shared Solutions Summit on the opioid crisis, listen here.

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