Kuster and Guinta Introduce STOP ABUSE Act to Address Heroin Epidemic
Washington, DC – On October 8, Representatives Frank Guinta (NH-01) and Annie Kuster (NH-02), co-chairs of the Bipartisan Taskforce to Combat the Heroin Epidemic, jointly introduced the Stop the Overuse Problem Already Becoming a Universal Substance Epidemic (STOP ABUSE) Act. This bipartisan legislation presents a comprehensive approach to treating and stopping the heroin epidemic that is threatening states and communities across the country, including New Hampshire.
“I am incredible proud to introduce this bipartisan bill, which will support a deeper examination into what is fueling the heroin epidemic here in New Hampshire as well as across the country, and how we can come together to bring an end to opioid abuse,” said Rep. Kuster. “I have heard too many devastating stories about the loss of a loved one to heroin addiction during my conversations with Granite Staters. The legislation that Representative Guinta and I introduced today takes a number of critical steps towards establishing lasting solutions that will finally give individuals, families, and communities struggling with the heroin epidemic both hope and peace of mind.”
“Today’s bill is the first endeavor of our Bipartisan Task Force to Combat the Heroin Epidemic and will not be our last,” said Rep. Guinta. “Many House members on both side of the aisle, like Congresswoman Kuster and me, recognize the gravity of heroin abuse in their districts, especially in New England. The STOP ABUSE bill capitalizes on the best of their ideas, more from state and local governments, and insight from individuals and families affected by addiction. I heard their stories, as mayor of Manchester, and am proud to offer legislation in Congress to help save lives.”
The STOP ABUSE Act addresses several aspects of combatting the growing heroin epidemic across the country, including the establishment of the Interagency Task Force on Heroin Addiction, the reauthorization of vital drug crisis grants, and the revision of treatment administration guidelines for individuals who are unable to receive take-home treatment, among other provisions.
Representatives Guinta and Kuster have previously partnered on mental health and veterans initiatives and believe that their latest partnership can help create lasting solutions for communities around the country that are impacted by the heroin epidemic.
Rep. Kuster is also a cosponsor of the bipartisan Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act, which makes broad reforms in the way we treat addiction by creating alternatives to incarceration and providing states with additional resources to combat abuse. Additionally, Kuster is a supporter of legislation that would help treat substance dependence in newborns and allow Medicare to cover substance abuse treatments at community treatment facilities.
Rep. Guinta has introduced a bipartisan bill to increase patients’ access to the life-saving overdose medication Naloxone and also cosponsored the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act. He is a member of the House Financial Services Committee.