Press Releases

Trahan, Blunt Rochester, Fitzpatrick Lead Bipartisan Push to Recognize Overdose Awareness Day

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Representatives Lori Trahan (D-MA-03)Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE-AL), and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA-01) led a bipartisan group of 21 of their colleagues in pushing the federal government to recognize and support the goals of Overdose Awareness Day – a day held in remembrance of the lives lost to overdoses.

To recognize Overdose Awareness Day, the Representatives sent a bipartisan letter to President Joe Biden requesting that he order U.S. flags on all federal buildings lowered to half-staff on August 31, 2021 as a symbol of mourning for the countless lives that have been lost to the overdose epidemic.

“On August 31, 2021 we will observe Overdose Awareness Day, which is held in remembrance of the lives lost due to substance use disorder,” the bipartisan group of lawmakers wrote to President Biden. “The substance and opioid use disorder crises have affected countless families and communities across the United States. Since 1999, our nation has lost over 750,000 American lives from drug overdoses, and the latest numbers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest an acceleration of overdose deaths during the coronavirus pandemic.”

“In light of the rising overdose deaths taking place across our country, we write to respectfully request that you order flags to be flown at half-staff on all federal buildings on August 31, 2021, Overdose Awareness Day,” the lawmakers requested. “We are grateful for the federal government’s work in acknowledging these crises and believe that your order to lower flags at half-staff on Overdose Awareness Day would be the appropriate expression in acknowledging the lives lost to substance use disorder.”

Additionally, to recommit the federal government’s support for the goals of Overdose Awareness Day, the lawmakers also joined together to introduce a bipartisan resolution that raises awareness of overdoses, reduces the stigma of drug-related deaths, and acknowledges the grief felt by families and friends of those who have tragically died from substance and opioid use disorder.

Trahan, Blunt Rochester, and Fitzpatrick were joined by a group of lawmakers on the letter in introducing the resolution including Representatives David McKinley (R-WV-01), Darren Soto (D-FL-09), Claudia Tenney (R-NY-22), Emanuel Cleaver, II (D-MO-05), David Trone (D-MD-06), John Curtis (R-UT-03), Sara Jacobs (D-CA-53), Mary Gay Scanlon (D-PA-05), Madeleine Dean (D-PA-04), Abigail D. Spanberger (D-VA-07), Ann Kuster (D-NH-02), Stephen Lynch (D-MA-08), Chris Pappas (D-NH-01), John H. Rutherford (R-FL-04), Haley Stevens (D-MI-11), David Cicilline (D-RI-01), John Yarmuth (D-KY-03), Thomas R. Suozzi (D-NY-03), Mark Amodei (R-NV-02), Katherine Clark (MA-05), and Raul M. Grijalva (D-AZ-03).

A digital copy of the letter sent today can be accessed by CLICKING HERE.

A digital copy of the resolution introduced today can be accessed by CLICKING HERE.