February 9, 2018 – Filling up jail cells isn’t the answer to address the disease of addiction, which is why we must encourage our elected leaders to support treatment programs to help save lives.
According to Newsday, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is proposing legislation to add fentanyl to the state’s controlled substances schedule. The measure would include different varieties of the dangerous drug to send individuals to jail. While the proposal might sound like a solution, it does nothing to help individuals struggling with addiction and the risk of overdose:
“The governor boasts about giving law enforcement the tools they need to make more arrests, but says nothing about providing people at risk of overdose the tools they need to survive,” Daniel Raymond, of the Harm Reduction Coalition, said Thursday. “We won’t end the overdose crisis by filling up jail cells.”
At issue is a Cuomo proposal to add 11 “analogs” of fentanyl (the drug with some mixtures) to the state’s controlled substances schedule, a change that would increase the number of fentanyl varieties that trigger top felony charges. Cuomo says it would close a loophole that currently allows fentanyl sellers to avoid stiffer sentences.
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