Congresswoman Ann McLane Kuster

Representing the 2nd District of New Hampshire
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Kuster Statement on Bipartisan Heroin Task Force Roundtable on Synthetic Opioids

May 16, 2017
Press Release

**Kuster: The Administration must keep its commitment to solving this crisis**

**This evening’s roundtable can be streamed live here**

(Washington, DC) – Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02), the founder and co-chair of the Bipartisan Heroin Task Force, released the following statement in advance of a roundtable hosted by the Task Force on law enforcement’s response to the spread of synthetic opioids.

“Synthetic drugs, such as Fentanyl and Carfentanil, pose a unique challenge to law enforcement working to addressing the opioid epidemic,” said Congresswoman Kuster. “I appreciate the opportunity to hear from members of the law enforcement community today about their response to this crisis and how we can best support efforts to get these deadly drugs off the street.”

Kuster continued, “One thing that has become abundantly clear is that we need a multifaceted approach to address the substance misuse crisis. That means law enforcement in conjunction with treatment and prevention efforts. The Administration must keep its commitment to solving this crisis and that entails ending misguided actions that undermine both treatment and interdiction efforts. I’ve been greatly concerned by reports of 94 percent cuts to the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), and of course, the blind pursuit of repealing the Affordable Care Act, which would jeopardize access to recovery and treatment services for some of the most vulnerable Americans. It’s long past time that President Trump recognize the importance of Medicaid Expansion and the protections created by the ACA to stemming the growth of the opioid epidemic.”

Kuster has helped lead the fight to address the heroin and opioid crisis at the federal level and in New Hampshire, and she has been an outspoken advocate for the need to support medical, law enforcement, treatment, and recovery efforts. Last week, she voiced her concerns about the impact a repeal of the Affordable Care Act would have on access to addiction treatment services directly to  Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price.

As the co-founder and co-chair of the Bipartisan Task Force to Combat the Heroin Epidemic, she was instrumental in the fight to pass 18 bills in the House to address the opioid crisis, and in recognition of her leadership on this issue, Kuster was appointed to the conference committee tasked with producing the final version of the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA).