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On the Issues

Combating the Fentanyl and Opioid Epidemic

Combating the Fentanyl and Opioid Epidemic

In Wisconsin, the opioid, fentanyl, and heroin epidemic has claimed too many lives, affected countless families, and devastated entire communities.

After holding community discussions across the state with treatment providers, local law enforcement, and the families who have lost loved ones, Tammy helped lead successful efforts to push Washington to finally step-up and support Wisconsin’s fight against the opioid epidemic.

Bipartisan Action to Invest in Wisconsin’s Opioid Fight

The opioid epidemic knows no political party and it will take bipartisan action to address this crisis. That’s why Tammy worked across party lines to pass bipartisan legislation that made major investments in local treatment, recovery, and prevention efforts.

Tammy sponsored the bipartisan Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), which was signed into law as a critical first step to promote a community-based response to opioid and heroin addiction. Tammy followed up by helping pass the bipartisan 21st Century Cures Act. During negotiations on the bill, Tammy worked with both Democrats and Republicans to secure a $1 billion emergency investment to combat the epidemic.

Halting Illicit Fentanyl

In recent years, fentanyl, a narcotic up to 50 times stronger than heroin, has ravaged Wisconsin causing a dramatic spike in overdose deaths. Tammy is leading the fight against fentanyl by pushing to increase penalties for drug trafficking, cutting off global supply chains by cracking down on transnational criminal groups that traffic fentanyl into the U.S., and taking the fight directly to China who allows criminals to ship drugs purchased online directly into the US through the mail. She has also visited the border herself to hear from law enforcement officers about the resources they need to combat fentanyl traffickers.

Tammy joined the bipartisan INTERDICT Act to give Customs and Border Protection the tools they need to detect and stop the flow of fentanyl from China and Mexico and then worked to push the legislation through Congress and deliver it to President Trump’s desk to be signed into law. The bipartisan law will protect Wisconsin communities like Milwaukee County, which has faced record fentanyl-related overdoses in multiple years.

Tammy also introduced the Naloxone Education and Access Act, key provisions of which were signed into law in December 2022. The law increases community access to life-saving opioid overdose reversal drugs like Naloxone. These drugs can reverse overdoses from fentanyl as well as heroin and prescription opioids.