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Zoeller Calls For Greater Federal Action To Address The Drug Crisis In The U.S.
Updated April 27, 2016 6:49 AM | Filed under: Crime
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(NEW ALBANY) - Attorney General Greg Zoeller, who serves as the co-chair of the Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Task Force, called for greater federal support for members of the health care community as a key part of his campaign for Congress in Indiana's 9th district.

"In my years working with members of the medical professions and those who serve in the public health community, I have gained a great appreciation and respect for the work they do every day," said Zoeller. "Support for these professionals in the battle against opioid addiction and overdose is an important public health issue that Washington has been too slow to address."

Attorney General Zoeller's office serves as legal counsel to the Medical Licensing Board, Nursing Board, Pharmacy Board and other professional licensing boards. Zoeller has been a leader in effort to address the epidemic of prescription drug abuse and addiction and has led the efforts to combat the rising rates of overdose deaths in Indians.

"Washington always seems to wait until there is a crisis before they address problems. With more overdose deaths from prescription drugs than car accidents this is clearly a crisis and requires aggressive action, not studies and half measures," said Zoeller.

Zoeller offered a three part plan of action to address the problem of prescription drug abuse, addition and the flood of heroin that is flooding into local communities:

1. Congress needs to fully fund mental health and addiction services though local medical providers to help prevent overdose deaths and address the lack of treatment and recovery options.
2. Congress should pass legislation to provide comprehensive FDA regulation of opioid-based prescription drugs and DEA enforcement actions against over prescribers.
3. Begin congressional investigation and oversight into the development of the opioids-based prescription drug market and the push that resulted in over-prescribing of these highly addictive drugs.

Joining to support Zoeller's call from greater federal action is Ed Clere, State Representative from New Albany and leader in the Indiana legislature in the public health area.

"Greg Zoeller has been willing to take tough stands to help address the epidemic we face of prescription drug abuse and heroin in our community," said Clere.

Zoeller also issued a call for a bilateral summit between the United States and Mexico to develop a collaborative effort to battle the drug cartel and end the trade in illegal drugs into the U.S. and the flow of money and guns into Mexico.

Zoeller serves on the Alliance Partnership, an organization comprised of Attorneys General to support the criminal justice efforts of states in both the U.S. and Mexico and has traveled to Mexico on two occasions and hosted Mexican officials in Indianapolis as part of these efforts.

"The United States and Mexico have a common enemy in the drug cartels who are the main source of the drugs that plague our communities and rip apart families and they are an increasing risk of violence and instability in Mexico. Washington needs to act before there is a refugee crisis on our southern border," said Zoeller.

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