This afternoon, President Trump declared the opioid epidemic a public health emergency in the East Room of the White House, stating, “It is time to liberate our communities from this scourge of drug addiction.” The White House also issued a press statement recognizing that drug overdoses are now the leading cause of injury death in the United States, outnumbering both traffic and gun deaths. The press release focuses on combatting the opioid epidemic as a public health issue.
Related to the opioid epidemic, the Sentencing Commission is currently receiving public comment on issues related to fentanyl and fentanyl analogues through November 13. Coverage of the President’s announcement is available here. Department of Justice charging policies regarding controlled substances and Sentencing Resources are available on fd.org.