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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Dave Baker (R)

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News from Dave: Important Update on Opioid Crisis

Thursday, October 26, 2017

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Dear Neighbors,

Happy Fall! I hope all of our local farmers are having a great harvest. We owe so much to our agriculture workers who do the hard work to put food on our tables year after year.

Opioid Update

Just today, President Donald Trump declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency. The declaration allows agencies to expedite hiring, cut red tape, and re-direct existing resources.

Today marks a new chance to start to turn the tide of the opioid crisis. As the number of opioid addictions and overdoses continue to grow, it’s important our state and federal government do what we can to stop this epidemic. I want to thank President Trump and his administration for this declaration, and look forward to doing everything we can to save the lives of vulnerable Americans.

On a related note, you may have seen, but I led a bipartisan group of legislators to send a letter to the Minnesota congressional delegation for the repeal of the Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2016.

Recent reports by “60 Minutes” and the Washington Post showed the act impedes the Drug Enforcement Agency’s (DEA) effort to seize unusual shipments of opioids, allowing more drugs into communities. The law was passed by unanimous consent – in both the House and the Senate – and signed by President Obama.

We’re seeing this law have a negative impact in attempting to fight the opioid epidemic. This provision takes away one of the DEA’s essential tools for limiting the distribution of excess opioids into the market. With the opioid crisis continuing to grow, I hope to see support from the Minnesota congressional delegation for repealing this harmful provision.

We’re seeing progress on this front, and are continuing to work on solutions to tackle the opioid crisis at the state and federal levels. Stay tuned for more details.

Drug Take Back Day

Saturday, October 28 is an important time in our country as it’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. This is when citizens commit to cleaning out old unused drugs from your medicine cabinets, and bringing these containers to a local depository to safely dispose of these dangerous drugs. The nationwide event is from 10am-2pm, and the closest site for Willmar residents is the Kandiyohi Sheriff's office at 2201 NE 23rd St., Ste 101 Willmar, MN 56201. For more locations, please put your address in here.

My hope is that our community can bring back these prescriptions at a record level! If you do partake in this event, thank you for doing such an important part in keeping unused opioids off the streets.

Please Contact Me

It’s truly an honor to serve the families of Kandiyohi County. If you’d like to set up a meeting or want me to come to an event or business tour, please reach out to my office; I’d love to hear from you.

Warmest regards,