"The CDC describes this as an epidemic and the White House Drug Czar calls this a top public health priority. As leaders in Congress, we need to lead the discussion on policy, education and solutions. The magnitude of the prescription drug epidemic should be on the minds of every member of Congress," said Rogers. "Every American is a stakeholder in the drug epidemic and its time to invest our energy and attention to solving the problem."
Florida's Attorney General Pam Bondi moderated a "Forum of the Congressional Caucus on Prescription Drug Abuse" on Thursday morning to discuss federal policy in the works and to answer questions from the audience.
Bondi said seven Floridians die from drug overdoses every day. "We're not going to give up on this," said Bondi. "It's about all of us working together."
U.S. Rep. Mary Bono-Mack (CA-45) co-founded the Congressional Caucus on Prescription Drug Abuse with Congressman Rogers. Her passion for the issue was sparked by the loss of a family member to drug abuse. She agreed with Rogers' call to action noting, "in Congress, the squeaky wheel gets the grease."
U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston (GA-01) said "you have to be at the table, not just today, but constantly." Kingston said the state of Georgia is closely monitoring Florida after the "Sunshine State" cracked down on pill mills and implemented a prescription drug monitoring system.
U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall (WV-03) attended the entire Summit, moderating and keynoting several sessions. "It's a nightmare that tests the bonds of family love," said Rahall who noted legislation is not going to change family situations alone, "but you can make it harder to find their drug of choice."
All four Members of Congress answered questions from the audience and listened to suggestions from Summit attendees.
For more information, visit www.nationalrxdrugabusesummit.org.
To view photos of the Summit visit the photo gallery at www.halrogers.house.gov.
Rogers has served Kentucky’s 5th Congressional District since 1981. With a focus on economic development, job creation, fighting illegal drugs and preserving Appalachia’s natural treasures, he has a reputation for listening to his constituents and fighting for the region he represents. For more information, visit www.halrogers.house.gov. ####
PHOTO #1 CUTLINE: Forum of the Congressional Caucus on Prescription Drug Abuse
PHOTO #2 CUTLINE: Congresswoman Mary Bono-Mack (CA-45) listens as Rogers Speaks during the Forum of the Congressional Caucus on Prescription Drug Abuse
PHOTO CUTLINE #3: Rogers speaks during the Forum of the Congressional Caucus on Prescription Drug Abuse