Assemblywoman Jean-Pierre: Assembly Budget Provides Critical Funding to Combat Opioid Crisis

“We’ve seen time and time again the devastating effects the opioid epidemic has had on families in Suffolk County and across the state, and it continues to be one of the most pressing issues in our area.

“Opioid overdoses were responsible for at least 400 deaths in Suffolk County last year, breaking the previous year’s record.1 However, we’ve slowed down the rate of increase for overdoses from year to year, and we need to continue building on the steps we’ve taken to curb this tragic trend to prevent more lives from being lost.

“No one should have to bury a loved one because they couldn’t access the addiction treatment they so desperately needed. The 2018-19 Assembly budget proposal increases funding for recovery programs by $47.75 million so individuals have greater access to treatment and support systems.

“Access to proper treatment and education is a critical component of battling drug dependence, which is why the Assembly budget creates an opioid surcharge to curb abuse and fund the expansion of treatment, prevention and recovery programs, as well as school-based substance use programs and workforce support.

“Recovery is a long, difficult but lifesaving road, which is why I’ll keep doing everything I can to ensure that individuals struggling with substance abuse can get the help they deserve.”