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Congressman Evan Jenkins

Representing the 3rd District of West Virginia

Combating the Drug Epidemic

Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome

Neonatal abstinence syndrome is the name given to newborns suffering from drug withdrawal resulting from the mother’s use of drugs during pregnancy. No baby should be born suffering from withdrawal from heroin, methamphetamine, oxycodone and other highly addictive drugs.

Congressman Evan Jenkins is fighting every day to help these newborns and to ensure that they receive the best possible care.

After multiple meetings with doctors, nurses, caregivers, and families, he drafted the Nurturing and Supporting Health Babies Act. This bill will expand what we know about NAS and will make significant strides in guaranteeing the best possible care for babies with NAS. This bill was passed by the House and included in the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act, which was signed into law. Congressman Jenkins has also introduced the Cradle Act which requires guidelines to be put in place to make it easier to open residential pediatric recovery centers, which specialize in the treatment of NAS babies.

Treatment and Recovery

Congressman Evan Jenkins has advocated for increased funding for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration to ensure that states have the resources necessary to implement much-needed mental health services. He has also championed increased funding for drug courts and veterans treatment courts – programs that work. These courts offer treatment and assistance in getting one’s life back on track.

Congressman Evan Jenkins was a proud supporter of the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act, which was signed into law. This bill will make significant strides to help our communities fight the opioid and heroin epidemic by creating new grant programs that focus on community efforts, getting money to those who know best how to use it. It also has a number of other measures that focus on treatment, recovery and prevention.

Thanks to his work on the House Appropriations Committee, Congressman Jenkins was able to secure language that would help keep the focus on Appalachia and West Virginia when securing grant funding for drug abuse programs. Recently Congressman Jenkins voted to increase SAMHSA’s Drug Abuse Prevention by $500 million. In addition to this, Congressman Jenkins has advocated for millions of dollars more in funding to fight the drug crisis and make sure treatment and prevention remain a critical part of our efforts.

Law Enforcement 

Representative Jenkins fought through the appropriations process to increase funding for the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA), a program that brings together local, state, and federal law enforcement in order to stop the flow of drugs into our communities. HIDTA also works closely with the community to stop drug abuse problems before they begin. Recently, Rep. Jenkins introduced an amendment to increase HIDTA by $2 million, which was adopted on the House floor unanimously. Funding for this program makes a significant difference in law enforcement’s efforts to stop drug trafficking.

Evan also advocated as a member of the House Appropriations Committee to secure funding for the Byrne JAG police grants program. This program allows local law enforcement to use federal grant money in the ways that will best help the community. He will continue to be an advocate for our law enforcement and their efforts to combat the drug epidemic in West Virginia. He also continues to fight for programs that will keep heroin off our streets, like fully funding the heroin task forces and the National Guard counterdrug programs.

More on Combating the Drug Epidemic

June 22, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – FBI Acting Director Andrew McCabe told U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) today that the FBI is discussing reopening a resident agency in Beckley to help respond to the drug crisis.

Rep. Jenkins asked Acting Director McCabe about the possibility of bringing back this office, citing how the opioid epidemic has ravaged southern West Virginia.

June 1, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) announced today that $70 million in federal grants are now available to help states, first responders, and recovery groups respond to the opioid crisis.

The grants were authorized by Congress in the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), which Rep. Jenkins championed and helped pass in July 2016.

May 23, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) issued the following statement today on the release of the president’s budget:

“While I appreciate the president’s aim to cut wasteful spending, this budget goes too far in critical areas for West Virginia. The proposed cuts to our safety net programs, including Medicaid and SNAP, would hurt too many of our state’s most vulnerable citizens, and I cannot support this budget proposal.

May 17, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) joined more than 70 of his House colleagues in a bipartisan letter urging the Trump administration not to cut vital funding for drug programs.

May 17, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) introduced bipartisan legislation today to help expand care programs for drug-exposed newborns.

The Caring Recovery for Infants and Babies (CRIB) Act would build on the best practices of Lily’s Place in Huntington for treating babies born exposed to heroin, opioids and other drugs. It would also make it easier for similar centers to open across the country by cutting regulatory red tape.

May 8, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) is asking the Drug Enforcement Agency to re-evaluate its quota system to prevent a future opioid crisis.

In a letter to DEA Director Chuck Rosenberg, Rep. Jenkins says he firmly believes the DEA’s drug quota system for opioid production needs to re-examined and reformed in light of the opioid crisis in West Virginia and across the nation.

May 5, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) issued the following statement today regarding news that the White House plans to propose extensive cuts to the Office of National Drug Control Policy:

May 5, 2017 Press Release

U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) voted this week to provide billions of dollars for drug treatment, drug courts, mental health care, prescription drug monitoring, and drug diversion programs.

As a member of the House Appropriations Committee, Rep. Jenkins fought to make sure the fiscal year 2017 appropriations bill included funding to address the drug crisis ravaging our state and nation. President Trump signed the bill into law Friday afternoon.

April 20, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) announced today that West Virginia will be receiving a nearly $6 million grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to help combat the opioid crisis.

The $5,881,983 grant was provided for by the 21st Century Cures Act, which Rep. Jenkins proudly supported when it passed the House in November 2016 and when it was funded in December. The grant will fund expanded access to treatment, education and prevention.

April 4, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) introduced a bipartisan bill on Monday to help improve prescription drug monitoring programs and reduce opioid abuse.