Tackling The Fentanyl Crisis & Supporting Families: An ALEC Women’s Leadership Episode

As part of ALEC’s Women Leadership Series, ALEC Federalism & International Relations Task Force and Homeland Security Task Force Senior Director Karla Jones and ALEC Health & Human Services Task Force Senior Director Brooklyn Roberts recently interviewed Deena Loudon, Ambassador at Shatterproof and mother of Matthew Loudon, and Tina Marie Bell, mother of Brandon Bell, about dealing with the loss of loved ones to the ongoing fentanyl crisis and the need for a comprehensive approach to address the crisis.

Deena Loudon highlighted how lawmakers should address this crisis with stricter distribution laws.

I think what we’re up against with China and the Mexican cartel is so much bigger than us, especially as parents, but I really feel like the lawmakers need to sort of know when to bring the hammer down. They need to impose much stricter laws on people that are selling it.  It’s killing our youth, and it is war on our youth, and we’re defenseless against it. The other thing, my sister and I actually we went to a bill markup down on Capitol Hill where they were trying to make fentanyl a chemical of mass destruction and unfortunately, that got squashed. It needs to be you known that it is part of a war.

Tina Marie Bell later relayed the need to discuss why children are turning to these drugs and remove the stigma of having these conversations in order to find support for the children.

I want to see more done in addressing the reason our children are turning to drugs. There is a difference between a child that goes to a party and tries something once because their friend is doing it and the child that is looking for something on social media to relieve their anxiety from something else that’s going on in their lives. I don’t think it’s being addressed like it should be. Social media in general has put so much pressure on our children to be a certain way… I would like to remove the stigma — when something does happen — if your child is addicted, you need to be able to find support.

Watch the full interview. 

In Depth: Health

There has never been a time when both federal and state jurisdictions have been more in control of American’s healthcare than it is today. Implementation of the Affordable Care Act is well in motion, and each state has considered how to address provisions of the federal law as it has…

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