Donnelly Statement on Governor Pence's Initial Recommendations from Task Force on Drug Enforcement, Treatment, and Prevention

Granger, Ind. – U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly released a statement following Governor Mike Pence’s announcement today on initial recommendations from the Governor’s Task Force on Drug Enforcement, Treatment, and Prevention. Donnelly outlined recommendations to help address drug abuse and addiction in Indiana in a letter sent to the co-chairs of Governor Pence’s Task Force. 

Donnelly said, “Like many Hoosiers, I am deeply concerned by our state’s struggle with drug abuse and addiction, particularly the ongoing opioid abuse epidemic, and its impact on individual Hoosiers, their families, and our communities. It is important for the Governor to look into a possible Medicaid waiver, and it’s something I recommended in my letter to his Task Force. As I’ve said, with a public health crisis we need not only policy changes, but also a commitment to provide the support and resources required to adequately address the problem—and I look forward to seeing full recommendations from the Governor’s Task Force.” 

Donnelly outlined recommendations to help address drug abuse and addiction in Indiana in a letter sent to the co-chairs of the Governor’s Task Force. Donnelly provided suggestions to Governor Pence’s Task Force as part of a short- and long-term response to Indiana’s addiction problems. In addition to offering specific suggestions to the Task Force, he emphasized that any strategy to address addiction in Indiana will require the State to not only identify necessary policy changes, but also make a commitment to implementing and funding those changes moving forward.   

As part of his ongoing effort to combat the opioid abuse and heroin use epidemics, earlier this year, Donnelly reintroduced the bipartisan Heroin and Prescription Opioid Abuse Prevention, Education, and Enforcement Act along with Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), which focuses on several key areas: enhancing training and education for prescribers; supporting state development of prescription drug monitoring programs; ensuring adequate funding for law enforcement; expanding access to naloxone; and raising awareness of the dangers of prescription opioid abuse and heroin use. In June 2014, Donnelly first introduced bipartisan legislation seeking to address opioid addiction.

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