Samantha’s business might shut down for good if the proposed bill HR 5219 becomes the Opioid Prescription Verification Act (OPVA). The bill, introduced by Representative Rodney Davis, would make it mandatory for people in Illinois to show a government issued valid identity proof at the time of purchasing prescription opioids from a pharmacy. The bill would hurt Samantha, as she illegally sold opioid pain relievers prescribed to her. She had been using prescription opioids since she injured her leg in a car crash two years ago. In a year’s time, she was addicted to the prescriptions and had stopped going to work as well. She started selling the opioids to earn money and sustain her own addiction, now to heroin. Continue reading
Despite umpteen measures, the United States of America’s struggle to control drug overdose deaths continues. Not just deaths, drugs are a major reason behind the rising number of prisoners. During 1993 to 2011, there were 3 million admissions into federal and state prisons for drug offenses. Over the same period, there were 30 million arrests for drug crimes, 24 million of which were for possession.
What is a matter of greater concern is that 80 percent of the offenders in prison abused drugs or alcohol, nearly 50 percent inmates were clinically addicted and almost 60 percent tested positive for drugs at the time of arrest. These statistics are relevant because approximately 60 to 80 percent drug abusers commit a new crime as soon as they are released from prison and the post-incarceration crime is normally drug-driven. Continue reading