Officials hoping $11M in funding for fighting opioid epidemic will be enough to make an impact
Connecticut officials are still deciding how to spend the first $11 million of a total $300 million in funding for fighting the opioid epidemic. That money is part of a settlement with drug companies over their role in the crisis.
As restitution starts reaching Connecticut, treatment experts hope it's enough to make a big impact.
"We got our name to liberate the community from the scourge of drug addiction 51 years ago, and sadly we're still hard at work," said John Hamilton, president and CEO of Liberation Programs.
Hamilton also chairs the advisory board for the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. The department will now weigh how the first $11 million payment - received in July - will be spent.
Hamilton is pushing for school programs to help children understand how dangerous and widespread fentanyl has become.
"We need to get them frightened that one use could kill them. And that isn't going to insult their intelligence, it is a fact and tragically people are dying at young ages," he said.
Fifteen percent of the settlement headed for towns and cities affected by the opioid crisis. Experts say every dose of Narcan purchased is another life saved.