Heroin addiction continues to be one of the fastest growing health problems facing a wide variety of cities: from small towns to major metropolitan areas like New York and Washington D.C. Many people whose community has been touched by addictions have turned to government officials for answers as to how to rid their city this deadly drug. In the state of New York, lawmakers are tackling the grave problem of heroin addiction by proposing 25 different laws whose purpose is to minimize or eliminate heroin abuse.

Bills Set To Cover A Wide Variety Of Tactics

Medical professionals, addicts, and their families alike are familiar with the fact know that heroin addiction is a problem that has many different roots and causes. Because of this, fighting heroin abuse will require solutions that are similarly multi-pronged. The bills being proposed to the New York Senate cover a wide variety of programs that will each play a specific and hopefully effective role in helping end the heroin epidemic. Some of the programs, for example, focus on education for people of all ages.

These educational programs are aimed at helping ease the severity of the drug problem through prevention. Many of the prevention programs outlined in this section of the bill focus on programs that can be implemented by public schools. Many other proposed bills focus on the medical aspect of treatment. These bills acknowledge that many of the individuals who are currently struggling with addiction may not have adequate access to services.

A number of the propose bills would put protections into place that would stop a patient from being denied treatment by their insurance companies. According to one such bill, health insurance companies who dispute the validity of a patient’s claim would be required to continue paying for a patient’s treatment program until said dispute was resolved. Another major aspect of fighting heroin use is eliminating the drugs from the streets. Some of the proposed bills would allow for extra resources for law enforcement, and may include the hiring of new officers and more harsh punishment for dealers.

Some Critics of the Bills

Some residents and political officials in New York state are critical of the proposed bills because they fear that many of them would present substantial costs for the tax payers. Proponents of the bills have addressed critics by saying that fears about costs do not include the bigger picture. Those who support the proposed bills argue that prevention plans will actually be financially advantageous in the long run, as tax payer money associated with arrests and crime as a result of heroin distribution and use may be drastically lowered.

Heroin is a Problem That Impacts All Kinds Of Communities

Sen. Phil Boyle, R-Long Island, is chairman of the New York State Committee on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. He has been adamant about the need for drug prevention legislation because the epidemic is having an effect on New York residents “from Buffalo to Montauk, New York City, rural communities, everywhere throughout the state,”. New York is one of many states struggling with heroin addiction.

Officials in the federal government have recognized the need to attempt to stop the drug from entering the United States. Many experts believe, however, that it is necessary for local governments and state governments to take serious action in order to prevent the use and abuse of heroin in their areas. This will allow for programs that are more tailored for the unique needs of each community. As more laws are passed to help reduce instances of use and abuse, many experts hope this problem will become less severe.