President Donald Trump declared on Thursday that the opioid crisis is an emergency that needs immediate attention
The White House declared in a statement that “building upon the recommendations in the interim report from the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis, President Donald J. Trump has instructed his Administration to use all appropriate emergency and other authorities to respond to the crisis caused by the opioid epidemic.”
“The opioid crisis is an emergency, and I am saying, officially, right now, it is an emergency. It’s a national emergency,” Trump said earlier at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey. “We’re going to spend a lot of time, a lot of effort and a lot of money on the opioid crisis. It is a serious problem the likes of which we have never had.”
More than that, Trump’s actions take effect just two days after Tom Price, Health and Human Services Secretary, strongly suggested that declaring it a national emergency is of no need.
“We believe that at this point, the resources that we need or the focus that we need to bring to bear to the opioid crises can be addressed without the declaration of an emergency,” Price said, “although all things are on the table for the president.”
However, Trump had been previously advised that declaring it a national health emergency would be of tremendous help in combating the current crisis.
“Our citizens are dying. We must act boldly to stop it,” the commission, headed by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, said in its interim report. “The first and most urgent recommendation of this Commission is direct and completely within your control. Declare a national emergency.”