WASHINGTON – To mark the beginning of National Substance Abuse Prevention Month, U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams joined the Department of Justice in announcing grant awards of nearly $320 million to combat the opioid crisis in America. The awards will directly help those most impacted by the deadliest drug crisis in American history, including crime victims, children, families and first responders.
“President Trump has made ending the opioid crisis a priority for this administration, and under his leadership, the Department of Justice has taken historic action,” said Attorney General Jeff Sessions. “Today we are announcing our next steps: investing $320 million into all three parts of the President’s comprehensive plan to end the epidemic: prevention, treatment, and enforcement. We are attacking this crisis from every angle—and we will not let up until we bring it to an end.”
“The opioid addiction crisis cannot be solved by any one agency or jurisdiction. It requires a coordinated effort of governments, law enforcement agencies, community organizations, and individual citizens, working together to solve problems, big and small,” said U.S. Attorney Williams. “These awards are an important step in the right direction and will expand the reach of innovative programs across the state.”
Approximately $6.3 million of the $320 million awarded by the Department’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP) will support local governments and a professional consortium in Oregon. A complete breakdown of the grant funding can be found here.
Summary of Oregon Awards
Comprehensive Opioid Abuse Site-based Program ($162 million total awarded)
Helps jurisdictions plan and implement programs aimed at reducing opioid abuse and mitigating its impact on crime victims
- Marion County – $1,399,562
- Clackamas County – $900,000
Helping Children and Youth Impacted by Opioids ($46.6 million awarded)
Helps children and youth impacted by the opioid crisis
- Clackamas County – $1,000,999
Drug Courts ($81.2 million awarded)
Assists adult, juvenile and family drug courts and veterans treatment courts
- City of Beaverton – $500,000
- Washington County – $945,454
- Lane County – $550,000
Northwest Professional Consortium Inc. – $856,308
Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grant Program ($17 million awarded)
Addresses the dramatic increase in deaths and backlogs of seized drugs resulting from the crisis
- Washington County – $156,000
Two important anti-drug events occur in October: Red Ribbon Week and National Prescription Drug Takeback Day. Red Ribbon Week, October 23-31, encourages students, parents, schools and communities to promote drug-free lifestyles. The Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day on October 27 gives Americans and easy and anonymous way to dispose of unwanted prescription drugs, helping to prevent overdose deaths and drug addictions before they start.
In 2017, more than 72,000 Americans lost their lives to drug overdoses, an increase from the 64,000 overdose deaths in 2016, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The majority of these deaths can be attributed to opioids, including fentanyl. Drug overdose is now the leading cause of injury or death in the United States. In Oregon, the total number of deaths related to drug use increased 11 percent between from 2013 to 2017, with 546 known drug-related deaths last year.