AG Curtis Hill voices support of White House opioid initiative

Last Updated on March 20, 2018 by cassnetwork

INDIANAPOLIS – On Monday, Attorney General Curtis Hill voiced his support of President Donald J. Trump’s new initiative to stop opioid abuse and reduce drug supply and demand in the United States.

According to the White House, the new plan will work to “strengthen vulnerable families and communities, and will help build and grow a stronger, healthier, drug-free society.”

“We must attack the opioid crisis from every conceivable angle,” said Attorney General Curtis Hill. “Countless Hoosiers have witnessed firsthand the devastation drug addiction has had on members of their family, friends and neighbors. From my first day in office, we have prioritized attention and resources toward fighting this crisis that is destroying Hoosier lives and devastating Indiana communities. I support the initiatives put forth by the President today, and I look forward to continued collaborative efforts with the federal government toward a solution to this devastating crisis. I also applaud the President for calling on Congress to pass legislation reducing the threshold amount of drugs needed to invoke mandatory minimum sentences for drug traffickers who knowingly distribute certain illicit opioids that are lethal in trace amounts, and I will be encouraging Indiana lawmakers to heed President Trump’s call and take the lead in making Indiana the worst possible state in America for drug dealers to operate.”

Hoosiers are no strangers to the opioid crisis, which is why Attorney General Hill and his staff have worked tirelessly to create initiatives to assist with prevention, enforcement and treatment.

Attorney General Hill has actively promoted the following initiatives:

  • Highway Interdiction Teams (HITs), which are comprised of law enforcement officers whose primary duty is removing illegal drugs from Indiana highways. Attorney General Hill’s initiative is assisted by the President’s stated support for strengthening criminal penalties in dealing and trafficking in fentanyl and other opioids; securing land borders, ports of entry, and water ways against illegal smuggling; and by the Federal Government’s engagement with China and expansion of cooperative efforts with Mexico to reduce supplies of heroin, other illicit opioids, and precursor chemicals.
  • Jail Chemical Addiction Programs (JCAP), which give inmates access to addiction treatment while serving sentences for criminal violations. This local initiative could serve as a model for expansion to federal correctional facilities by the President’s new initiative leveraging opportunities in the criminal justice system to identify and treat federal offenders struggling with addiction.
  • TenPoint Coalition, which favors a “boots on the ground” approach to street engagement primarily with young people aged 12-24 to reduce gun violence. Often violent criminal conduct is connected to the illegal drug trade. Attorney General Hill is excited to see the President’s launch of a nationwide evidence-based campaign to raise public awareness about the dangers of prescription and illicit opioid use, as well as other drug use. TenPoint Coalition should serve as an evidence-based model for supporting vulnerable youth at the local level.
  •  BitterPill, which is an education campaign that serves as a resource for community members, health care providers and law enforcement on the dangers of prescription drug abuse. This campaign is supported by the Indiana Attorney General’s Prescription Drug Abuse and Prevention Task Force, and is the main theme of the Indiana Attorney General’s yearly Prescription Drug Abuse Symposium, a statewide event where health care professionals and law enforcement can receive continuing education.

Attorney General Hill looks forward to working with the President on these other specific topics outlined in his release:

  • Reduce demand and over-prescription of opioids through educating Americans about the dangers of opioids and other drug use and seek to curb over-prescription and launch a nationwide evidence-based campaign to raise public awareness about the dangers of prescription and illicit opioid use, as well as other drug use.
  • Cut off the supply of illicit drugs by cracking down on international and domestic illicit drug supply chains devastating American communities.
  • Support Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Prescription Interdiction and Litigation Task Force fight against the prescription opioid crisis by expanding the DOJ Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit’s efforts to prosecute corrupt or criminally negligent doctors, pharmacies, and distributors
  • Reduce the over-prescription of opioids which has the potential to lead Americans down a path to addiction or facilitate diversion to illicit use.
  • Provide on-demand, evidence-based addiction treatment to service members, veterans and their families eligible for healthcare through the Departments of Defense or Veterans Affairs.
  • Establish guidelines and recommendations as to best practices of prescribing opioids.

SOURCE: News release from the Office of Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill