National Call-in Day: Help Get the Comprehensive Addiction Recovery Act Passed

Diverse and Casual People and Togetherness ConceptHeroin and prescription painkiller abuse is having a devastating effect on public health and safety across the United States. According to the CDC, drug overdoses now surpass automobile accidents as the leading cause of accidental death for Americans aged 25 to 64. More than 120 Americans die as a result of overdose every day. While addiction is a treatable disease, only about 10 percent of those who need treatment get it.

We know from experience that the most effective way to address these challenges is to initiate a comprehensive response that addresses all aspects of the problem. Designed to respond both to today’s heroin and opiate epidemic and tomorrow’s threats, the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) is an all-inclusive response to opiate and heroin addiction that includes prevention, law enforcement strategies, overdose prevention, expansion of evidence-based treatment and support for those in, or seeking, recovery.

CARA was first introduced in the 113th Congress by Senators Whitehouse and Portman and Representatives Sensenbrenner and Scott. This bi-partisan legislation is a comprehensive and commonsense solution to the opiate and heroin addiction epidemic that faces our country. Both the Senate and House bills have been reintroduced this year in the 114th Congress and are building momentum with additional co-sponsors.

But we need your help to ensure that the legislation receives the attention and support that it deserves. Join us Wednesday, April 29, 2015 for a phone campaign to contact key Senators and Representatives on the House and Senate Judiciary Committees, the House Energy and Commerce, Health Subcommittee and the House Education and Workforce Committee to help co-sponsor the CARA Act (S. 524 in the Senate and H.R. 953 in the House). Here’s how you can get involved:

1) Locate the number of your state Senator and House Representatives here.

2) Please feel free to use either of these suggested phone scripts:

“CARA provides important tools to law enforcement in the fight against heroin and opiate addiction. It would provide opportunities for programs other than incarceration for individuals convicted of drug use, provide training for and increase availability of naloxone, a life-saving overdose combatting drug, and would expand the federal drug take-back program. These are crucial steps to controlling this epidemic and would benefit every state in the nation, including [STATE]. Please have Senator/Representative XXXX co-sponsor this important legislation.”

“CARA provides important tools for treatment and recovery in the fight against heroin and opiate addiction. It would provide funds for an evidence-based opioid and heroin treatment and intervention demonstration, authorize the creation of a national youth recovery initiative, and provide funds to non-profits in order to create communities of recovery. These are crucial steps to controlling this epidemic and would benefit every state in the nation, including [STATE]. Please have Senator/Representative XXXX co-sponsor this important legislation.”

Together, let’s get CARA passed and help improve the lives of the millions of people affected by addiction!

Thank you,

Marcia Lee Taylor, Interim President & CEO, Partnership for Drug-Free Kids

Advocacy