YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-OH, says both state and federal lawmakers need to be doing more to address the growing epidemic of heroin use.
New statistics from the Centers for Disease Control show Ohio had the second highest number of overdose deaths from heroin in the nation last year. More than 2,700 lives were lost to the drug in 2014, or roughly one death every three hours.
Brown said, while some actions have been taken, he thinks lawmakers have been largely indifferent.
“We’ve tried to get in the hands of people that drug… that can save somebody’s life from an overdose,” he said. “We’re trying to do all these things, but Columbus hasn’t really cooperated, and Congress isn’t doing enough.”
Brown said lawmakers should focus programs and funding toward targeting school-aged children to keep them from getting involved with drugs, as well as making sure doctors are not over-prescribing pain medications that he says could eventually lead patients to start using opiates.