Yarmuth, Gray asking Congress to approve $600 million in funds t - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Yarmuth, Gray asking Congress to approve $600 million in funds to treat heroin addiction

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- One day after more than two dozen people overdosed on suspected heroin in Louisville, Congressman John Yarmuth and Lexington Mayor Jim Gray stopped at the recovery center at The Healing Place in Louisville to call on Congress to pass federal funding for treatment for heroin addicts. 

More than two dozen people have overdosed on suspected heroin in Louisville in the past 24 hours.

President Obama signed the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act last month, but it requires that money be set aside every year. Yarmuth and Gray want Congress to approve $600 million in funding.

"This country and Congress have never taken this attitude about emergencies," Yarmuth said. "When we see American lives being lost and people suffering, we come up with the funding to help make sure we solve these problems. This Congress with Senator Paul refuses to do that and it's disgraceful."

Kelsey Cooper, Communications Director for Rand Paul for Senate 2016, sent the following response: 

“It’s disappointing that rather than focusing on the bipartisan work of Congress in addressing the opioid epidemic, Mayor Gray is once again politicizing a crisis. The heroin epidemic facing our Commonwealth is too important to be left to partisan bickering, which is why Dr. Paul reached across the aisle to work with Democrat Sen. Ed Markey to ensure crucial language from their bill, the TREAT Act, was included in the final opioid bill to expand access to addiction treatment. In addition to voting for $1.5 billion in funding for addiction prevention and treatment efforts, Dr. Paul has led on this issue and will continue standing for Kentucky families as we fight back against this epidemic and help people find a path to recovery.”

Gray, a Democrat, faces Republican Rand Paul in November in the race for Paul's Senate seat.

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