A “Quiet Epidemic”
It came as no surprise to anyone when Hillary Clinton announced her bid for the Presidency. What will surprise most Americans, however, is one of the issues she wants to tackle. That’s right, Hillary Clinton wants to end drug addiction once and for all.
The former First Lady and Secretary of State plans to make substance abuse a major part of her presidential campaign. If elected, she plans to make it a major part of her legislative agenda.
And for good reason! For the last several years, America’s been in the grip of a prescription opioid epidemic. As regulations on these drugs grew tighter, many users embraced a cheaper and stronger alternative, which has led to our current heroin epidemic. Heroin and painkiller deaths combined now outnumber car crash fatalities.
Excessive drinking is at an all time high. There’s talk of more and more young professionals abusing stimulants to get a leg up in the workplace. Synthetic drugs are stronger than ever. Make no mistake, this country is in need of some serious help when it comes to drugs and alcohol.
According to Clinton, “This [substance abuse] is a quiet epidemic.” So, what does she plan to do to address drug abuse and addiction? Just what strategies and tactics does she have up her sleeve?
Clinton’s Drug Plan
In late April, Clinton met with New Hampshire locals for a roundtable discussion. Prior to this, she met with Iowa locals for a similar discussion. One issue was brought up time and time again – substance abuse.
About substance abuse, Clinton said,
“I want to hear from people of New Hampshire what’s on their minds…I have to tell you, before I went to Iowa last week I wasn’t aware of the depth of feeling people had about substance abuse issues, so here again, I heard it in New Hampshire, so I want people to know that I’m listening” (CBS News).
Hillary Clinton is listening, but what does she plan to do? That much isn’t clear yet. She’s still in the formative stages of her campaign and hasn’t developed a plan of action. Talking with local communities, advisors, and friends, she’s sure to come up with one.
Clinton did praise the Affordable Care Act. She noted that substance abuse and mental health parity is a huge step forward, but believes more has to be done. According to CBS News, “…lawmakers have to ‘do more,’ and [she] called for a ‘concerted policy’ at the ‘national, state, local’ levels, and across the public and private sectors.”
[BLUECTA title=”Addiction is not a choice!”]866-205-3108[/BLUECTA]
Addressing this last part, the national, state, and local levels, seems to be on Hillary’s mind. She framed substance abuse as an overwhelmingly local issue. This isn’t to say she won’t work on national legislation if she’s elected. Rather, it seems Clinton believes the most effective change will come from within communities themselves.
On a personal level, I like where Clinton’s head is. A combination of national laws and increased community focus should bring about nothing but good results. That’s the approach recovery communities in south Florida have taken and look where we’re at – the recovery capital of the world!
One thing is for sure, the issue of substance abuse needs to be tackled in the 2016 presidential race. With the death toll mounting, it’s something candidates simply can’t ignore any longer. Let’s hope Hillary Clinton’s proactive approach to addiction galvanizes other presidential hopefuls to come up with plans of their own!