Don’t Worsen America’s Deadly Opioid Crisis

Target: Mick Mulvaney, Office of Management and Budget Director

Goal: Do not cut funding to the Office of National Drug Control Policy.

Our nation is grappling with a deadly drug crisis that claims more and more American lives every year, yet the Trump administration is threatening to wipe out funding for one of our last defenses against this epidemic: the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). Doing so would greatly inhibit the federal response to drug trafficking and addiction, and likely handicap efforts to solve the drug crisis by treating addiction as a crime, rather than the national health issue it is.

The ONDCP works by coordinating the efforts of the federal government’s many agencies, including the Departments of Justice and Health, to apply a single, coherent drug policy. However, with the Trump administration’s proposed budget cut of 95 percent, from $380 million to just $24 million, the ONDCP would be severely limited in its capacity to function at a time when the nation desperately needs it.

Furthermore, because President Trump has filled his administration with hardline “tough on crime” advocates like Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the federal government would likely ramp up efforts to throw addicts in jail. Yet, as the former head of the ONDCP has argued, “we can’t arrest and incarcerate addiction out of people.” With 52,000 drug overdose deaths in 2015 alone, the drug crisis ravaging the U.S. must be stopped. Take a stand against the Trump administration’s efforts to undermine the fight against this crisis by signing below. 


Dear Director Mulvaney,

A memo from your Office of Management and Budget indicates that the Trump administration will soon propose to slash funding for the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) by 95 percent as a means of reducing government spending. However, this action would seriously hurt efforts to combat the nation’s growing drug epidemic. 

As the former head of the ONDCP Michael Botticelli has aptly pointed out, “we can’t arrest and incarcerate addiction out of people.” However, by nearly eliminating funding for the ONDCP, efforts to coordinate the treatment of addiction as a public health crisis would be replaced by “tough on crime” policies that treat addicts as criminals. Such policies would do a grave disservice to the millions of addicts and their families who are suffering as a result of the opioid epidemic. I ask that you leave funding for the ONDCP intact and instead reform expenditures to ensure that the federal government is best able to combat the drug crisis plaguing our nation and preserve the health and safety of its citizens.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Byung Kyu Park

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