Congress Passes Major Legislation to Tackle Opioid Epidemic
Yesterday, the Senate voted overwhelmingly in bi-partisan fashion, 92-2, in favor of passing the conference report on the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), S. 524.
This follows the House of Representatives passing the same legislation last week, also by an overwhelmingly bi-partisan vote.
The bill will now go to the President's desk for signature into law.
This is the first major federal addiction legislation in 40 years, and is the most comprehensive effort undertaken to address the opioid epidemic, encompassing all six pillars necessary for such a coordinated response – prevention, treatment, recovery, law enforcement, criminal justice reform, and overdose reversal. Passage of this legislation in both the House of Representatives and Senate is an astounding achievement for our field.
“CARA recognizes the vital importance of prevention and provides critical enhancement grants to current and former Drug-Free Communities grantees to combat prescription drug and methamphetamine abuse in their communities. This comprehensive bill lays the groundwork to turn the tide on the opioid epidemic, which is killing 129 people a day,” said Gen. Arthur T. Dean, CADCA’s Chairman and CEO.
This is also noteworthy because it was a near-unanimous, bi-partisan, bi-cameral vote of support of addressing the opioid epidemic.
THANK YOU to all CADCA members who have been so engaged on this issue for the past weeks, months, and years – it would not have been possible without your efforts.