Different Takes: Has Trump ‘Botched’ Response To Opioid Crisis Or Is ‘Public Health Emergency’ Declaration A Meaningful Step
Opinion writers offer their ideas about whether President Donald Trump's declaration can have a meaningful impact on the nation's effort to address the problem.
The Washington Post:
Forget Trump’s ‘Public Health Emergency.’ Real Action On The Opioid Crisis Is Coming From The FDA.
The Trump administration has so far completely botched the national response to the opioid epidemic. More than two months after President Trump described the epidemic to reporters as a “national emergency” and a week after Trump promised to declare it so, the White House stopped short of that designation. Instead, it opted to declare a “public health emergency,” waiving some health-care regulations for states and promising other initiatives in the weeks to come. (Robert Gebelhoff, 10/26)
The New York Times:
Words, Not Action, From Mr. Trump On Opioids
President Trump’s brother died an alcoholic, so it’s hard to dispute that Mr. Trump understands the horrors of addiction. But in what was billed as a major speech on Thursday, Mr. Trump demonstrated that he has not grasped what’s needed to combat the opioid problem and, more important, the ways in which his own policies impede recovery for millions of Americans. (10/26)
What Trump Missed On Opioids
In sweeping if vague terms, President Donald Trump on Thursday declared opioid addiction a "national health emergency." What he didn't do is talk about one of the most effective ways to address it -- or how much it would all cost. (10/27)
The Wall Street Journal:
The Opioid Puzzle
President Trump has now declared opioid addiction a national “public health emergency,” a political formality for a crisis that has wrecked lives and families across America. The Trump Administration’s move is a moment to consider what the government can do to treat a social ailment that so far has resisted effective treatment. (10/26)
The Washington Post:
The Opioid Crisis Isn’t Limited To White Americans In Rural Pro-Trump Counties
After promising to do so this past summer and speaking about it repeatedly on the campaign trail, President Trump declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency Thursday. He discussed the magnitude of the drug problem in a speech at the White House.“ Addressing it will require all of our effort, and it will require us to confront the crisis in all of its real complexity,” he said, joined by first lady Melania Trump and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), chairman of a presidential commission on combating the crisis. (Eugene Scott, 10/26)
Want To Help An Addict? Call The Cops.
Last month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released data on drug-related deaths in the United States in 2016. The numbers are staggering. Approximately 64,000 people died of overdoses, a 22 percent increase over 2015. More than 60 percent of deaths involved opioids, a class of extremely addictive drugs that include pain medications like Percocet, Vicodin and OxyContin, as well as heroin. (Roger D. Klein, 10/26)
The Wichita Eagle:
Helping Families Relaunch Their Lives
Too often we have heard a judge state from the bench: “You have chosen drugs over your children.” No parent would choose “drugs” over their children purposefully, but their addiction often seems their only relief. We have mentored these families and helped them complete their court orders and see their families return home. It is rewarding to see families ‘ReLaunch.” We have seen families living in their cars and heavily addicted to methovercome their addiction and have their children returned home. We have worked with over 100 families and while some of the parents had their parental rights terminated, many more were able to complete their court orders and have their children returned to the home. We have found that when you encourage families to work with the system and teach them parenting techniques, parents and children are not only reunited, but are better. (Michael O' Donnell, 10/27)