[WASHINGTON, DC] – U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) released the following statement as President Trump is set to declare a public health emergency to address America’s opioid epidemic, a measure that falls far short of the relief needed. The declaration includes no new funding – merely frees up less than $57,000 in public health emergency funding – diverts staff and resources from managing other vital public health initiatives, and will expire in 90 days without guaranteed renewal.
“Families in Connecticut suffering from the opioid epidemic deserve better than half measures and empty rhetoric offered seemingly as an afterthought. An emergency of this magnitude must be met with sustained, robust funding and comprehensive treatment programs. The Administration’s proposal falls drastically short of what American communities desperately need. In the three months since the President called for an emergency declaration, hundreds of thousands have suffered the ravages of the opioid crisis. How many more Americans will die before President Trump takes the bold steps this crisis demands?”