Recovering Author Urges Trump: Address The Prescription Drug and Heroin Addiction Crisis
In the wake of the U.S. Surgeon General’s “Facing Addiction in America Report”, I have myself wondered how Donald Trump really plans to address this issue. In the report. Dr. Vivek Murthy made his opinion clear: addiction is a brain disease.
A few weeks ago, I wrote an article detailing the positions of the two candidates. While Hillary Clinton’s plan was clearly more in-depth, I noticed that Trump’s perspective had evolved somewhat.
But now that Trump is president-elect, it doesn’t really matter who said what. What matters now is the actions our new president will be taking to fight the scourge of prescription drug and heroin addiction – a disease that now kills more than 28,000 people per year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
I recently read a great article at The Hill by author and attorney Brian Cuban. Cuban is a former addict and alcoholic, and has also suffered from eating disorders and body dysmorphic disorder. He authored the well-received 2013 book “ Shattered Image: My Triumph Over Body Dysmorphic Disorder”, which chronicled his 27-year struggle with these conditions.
In his article, Cuban cites several disturbing facts and figures from the U.S. Surgeon General’s report. He calls the prescription drug and heroin addiction epidemic “a runaway train with no slowdown in sight.”
“The findings range from concerning to downright scary. As a person in long-term recovery from drug and alcohol addiction, and someone who has advocated for more awareness regarding these issues, I share the concerns of many as to the direction our country will take under the new administration in addressing this public health crisis.”
Cuban implores people to read the report and do so with an open mind. He notes that there is still a serious stigma surrounding drug addiction, but that “the odds are good that you know someone suffering.”
Finally, he requests:
“Join me in urging President-elect Trump to also read the report and step up to support the legislation and funding that will be necessary to address this public health crisis.”
And appeals to the new President-Elect:
“Trump, you are now president-elect. The Surgeon General has laid out the problem. It will take more than increased border security and filling our jails has already proven a disastrous approach. It will take, empathy, compassion, legislation and funding. Having experienced the heartbreak of addiction in your family, I know you empathize and have compassion. Now it’s time to act.”
Cuban makes some amazing and heartfelt points, well-articulated from someone who went through addiction and recovery, and clearly has a keen awareness of the issue.
Note: Just Believe Recovery has no political affiliation. This article is for informational purposes only. Opinions put forth by the author or correctly/incorrectly inferred by others do not reflect the opinions of this organization.
~ G. Nathalee Serrels, M.A., Psychology