August 31, 2017 — American families and communities have been devastated by the ongoing drug epidemic, but governments have struggled to adequately address the issue.
Bensalem Township in Bucks County is set to become the first municipality in the Delaware Valley to sue pharmaceutical companies to recoup money spent to fight the opioid crisis.
Mayor Joe DiGirolamo announced the township’s intentions at a press conference on Wednesday, claiming the companies hid the risks of addiction to the drugs manufactured and given to patients.
NewsWorks has more on the story:
Overdoses in Bensalem soared 556 percent, and drug arrests, 156 percent, in the past decade, said Fred Harran, the township’s public safety director. And Bensalem’s paramedics took more than 1,000 overdosing drug users to the hospital at a cost of more than $1 million. About 75 percent of that cost was not covered and had to be absorbed by taxpayers, the township’s EMS director Thomas Topley said.
Bucks County District Attorney Matt Weintraub said three-quarters of the crimes his office prosecutes are fueled by drugs or alcohol.
Pharmaceutical companies helped create an addiction crisis that kills an average of 13 Pennsylvanians a day, said state Rep. Gene DiGirolamo, whose district covers Bensalem.
Read the full story on NewsWorks.