The Opioid and Heroin Crisis

Opioid addiction is a serious crisis that is afflicting communities and families throughout New York. Within the counties of the 19th District alone, there were 268 opioid-related deaths in 2014—an all-time high.

In Congress, Zephyr will work with community leaders and first responders to address the heroin and opioid crisis through a comprehensive and compassionate approach to drug addiction and treatment, which includes:

  • Rehabilitation, not incarceration, for those suffering from opioid addiction. Simply locking up people with opioid addictions doesn’t stop crime, and it doesn’t heal addiction. Zephyr believes in a compassionate approach that keeps nonviolent drug offenders out of the criminal justice system and gives them opportunities to heal.

  • Listening to the communities and families most affected. Zephyr believes that we need to learn from the people who are struggling with the impacts of this epidemic, and listen directly to their concerns and ideas.

  • Working to raise up the voices of local leaders. In the 19th District, there are pioneering organizations like Friends of Recovery and innovative treatment programs like those practiced by the police department in Chatham. The examples of leadership and common-sense at the local level in the Hudson Valley and the Catskills should be a model for the whole country to follow.