Congresswoman Ann McLane Kuster

Representing the 2nd District of New Hampshire
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Standing Up for What's Right

Mar 3, 2017
Catching up with Annie

Dear Friends,

Happy March! It’s been another busy week, and as we celebrate the start of Women’s History Month I wanted to share a few important updates with you.

This week, I was joined for the second year by Susan Messinger of Holderness at a CARA Family Day event hosted by the Addiction Policy Forum. Susan’s son, Carl Messinger, tragically passed away from an opiate overdose a little over 2 years ago, and since that time, Sue has become an advocate on behalf of those seeking treatment and recovery services for addiction. In Carl’s honor, I recently reintroduced my legislation, Carl’s Law, which would require labeling on medications to signal the presence of opioids. Carl’s death was caused by a fentanyl overdose which occurred when he relapsed after being prescribed an opiate medication by a physician who was unaware of his history of addiction. If Carl’s medication had featured a warning label, his relapse and death could have been prevented.

Hearing from a panel of family members who have lost loved ones to overdoses at CARA Family Day.

Events like the Family Day are a great forum for families and communities impacted by the crisis to share their stories with one another and to educate the public on the importance of addressing addiction and opioid use disorders. Sue’s courage, and that of all the families who have lost a loved one to the opioid crisis, is remarkable and inspiring. As the co-founder and co-chair of the Bipartisan Heroin Task Force, I am working to stem the growth of the opioid epidemic, and I will make sure that my colleagues on both sides of the aisle continue to take this issue seriously.

Sue was also my guest to President Trump’s first address to a Joint Session of Congress on Tuesday. I invited Sue to remind the President of the importance of supporting recovery and treatment services for substance use disorders. We have to work together to advance policies to expand access to treatment, recovery, and education services, and I hope that the President will join the effort to combat this epidemic.

With Sue Messinger before President Trump's address to Congress

This week marked the start of Women’s History month, and during a time when many women feel undervalued, I was proud to join a number of my female colleagues in wearing white to the Joint Session on Tuesday night. We gathered together, in honor of the suffragettes, to let the President know that the women of America are watching. I’ll continue standing for women’s reproductive rights, equal pay for equal work, paid family leave and affordable child and healthcare, as well as high quality education for all Americans.

Wearing white to the Joint Session with my colleagues to stand up for women's rights.

Women’s History Month is a time for us to honor and thank the amazing women who came before us. I often think of my great-grandmother, Susan Bancroft, who served as president of the Concord Woman’s Club, the Concord Female Charitable Society, and the Concord Equal Suffrage League in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Every day I do my very best to make women like my great-grandmother proud, and I will continue to build off of her dedication to women’s rights.

My great-grandmother, Susan Bancroft.

As always, if there is anything I can do to help you or your family, please don’t hesitate to contact my office. It is an honor to represent New Hampshire’s Second Congressional District, and thank you for all that you do to make the Granite State such a fantastic place to live!