More than 300,000 Americans have died from overdoses involving opioids since 2000. In 2016 alone, these overdose deaths exceeded the total number of Americans killed during the Vietnam War. President Donald J. Trump has mobilized his entire Administration to address opioid abuse by directing the declaration of a nationwide Public Health Emergency.
Drug addiction and opioid abuse are ravaging America. Hundreds of thousands of Americans have lost their lives to drug abuse.
President Trump is fighting back. In its first year, the Trump Administration has moved quickly to answer this growing threat.
On October 26, 2017, President Trump announced that his Administration was declaring the opioid crisis a national Public Health Emergency under federal law, effective immediately. “I am directing all executive agencies to use every appropriate emergency authority to fight the opioid crisis,” the President said.
Learn more about opioid abuse and what the Trump Administration is doing to confront this threat:
“The best way to prevent drug addiction and overdose is to prevent people from abusing drugs in the first place,” President Trump says. “If they don’t start, they won’t have a problem.”
In November, the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) released a report on the economic costs of the opioid crisis. CEA finds that previous estimates of the economic cost of the opioid crisis greatly understate it by undervaluing the most important component of the loss: fatalities resulting from overdoses.
“It shall be the policy of the United States to use all lawful means to combat the drug demand and opioid crisis currently afflicting our country,” the President directed leaders across his Administration. “Heads of executive departments and agencies . . . shall exercise all appropriate emergency authorities.”
“When I had the honor of visiting Lily’s Place in West Virginia, a recovery center for infants born addicted to drugs,” First Lady Melania Trump said, “I learned that to help babies succeed, we must help their parents succeed.”
“In 2016, nearly 20,000 Americans died as a result of using synthetic opioids such as fentanyl,” President Trump said before signing the INTERDICT Act. “This law directs the Department of Homeland Security to provide additional tools and resources to detect and intercept the supply of illicit fentanyl.”
For President Trump, this crisis is personal. “I had a brother, Fred — great guy, best-looking guy, best personality,” the President shared during remarks on combatting the opioid crisis. “But he had a problem. He had a problem with alcohol . . . He really helped me. I had somebody that guided me, and he had a very, very, very tough life because of alcohol.”