Fentanyl awareness group issues letter to president

Voices for Awareness
Voices for Awareness((KKCO/KJCT))
Published: Aug. 15, 2022 at 1:23 AM MDT
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT) - With the fentanyl deaths on the rise, Voices For Awareness, a nonprofit organization, wrote a letter to President Joe Biden.

“This is a national security crisis. It is a health crisis, and it’s becoming a humanitarian crisis,” said Andrea Thomas, Voices for Awareness founder.

They’re asking him to declare a national emergency on the illicit fentanyl crisis.

“Parents are waking up in the morning and finding their children gone from taking something that has fentanyl in it,” said Thomas.

Thomas says she wants to bring the dialogue about illicit fentanyl to the forefront.

“I’m hoping that the president will address this with immediate action and with the urgency that it deserves,” added Thomas.

Fentanyl has taken one too many lives. “In 2018, I lost my daughter Ashley to a half of an M 30, which is a counterfeit pill made with fentanyl,” explained Thomas.

Like Thomas, hundreds of people are losing loved ones to the sinister substance. “We’ve got a mother in Denver this weekend that lost a 13-year-old boy, on his first day of school, to illicit fentanyl,” added Thomas.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, overdose deaths involving opioids, primarily fentanyl, increased from 70,029 in 2020 to 80,000 in 2021.

“The numbers are increasing,” said Thomas. “Our data is not complete. So imagine what the real numbers are.”

Thomas hopes to see the numbers decrease to help save others from devastation. “It’s very clear what is happening, affected families go out every day teaching prevention, bringing awareness, but we cannot stop the flood of fentanyl coming into the United States.”

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