As state governments are beginning to feel the pressure to handle the growing heroin problem, more solutions are being brought to the table. Unfortunately, these solutions are costly and usually are not accounted for in a state’s budget. As a result, many counties in the U.S. are looking toward the federal government for grants that will enable them to implement programs and procure resources in the fight against the growing heroin epidemic.
Some states are receiving a large amount of federal aid. Iowa, for instance, will receive almost $8 million over the next three years to help beef up treatment facilities and improve care for addicts. Only a few states were selected to receive that type of funding, but it is clear that the demand is high for federal help in this matter across the nation.
Charles Schumer, a senator from New York, made a public announcement declaring that the state desperately needed help from the federal government if they hoped to put a dent in the heroin problem. Schumer announced that heroin arrests in Putnam County had increased 300 percent and heroin-related deaths have increased 400 percent in the last two years. “The battle against heroin is one we must win. Too many beautiful young lives are wasted by this epidemic,” rallied Schumer.
Schumer added that he made a request to the federal government to include Putnam and Rockland counties as high-intensity drug trafficking areas. This would allow the counties to receive much needed federal funding. In addition to the new classification, Schumer has also requested $100 million to kick-start the battle against the deadly drug.
The panic most counties across the country are feeling is not unfounded. The issue of heroin is not only growing, it is gaining steam and reaching areas that have previously never had to deal with a problem like this.