COLUMBUS— State Rep. Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron) today responded to news that Attorney General Mike DeWine is suing five drug companies for allegedly flooding Ohio with addictive opioid painkillers:    

“While I agree drug companies should be held responsible for recklessly pushing powerfully addictive painkillers, a lawsuit alone isn’t going to prevent additional deaths due to opioid and heroin addiction and abuse.

“For too long, Ohio has been the face of the national opioid epidemic. Why are we leading in opioid deaths but severely lagging when it comes to confronting this public health emergency?

“It is past time for the governor to address the historic number of Ohioans dying from opioids and heroin by declaring a statewide emergency to release emergency funding for first responders, law enforcement and local health organizations.

“Other states have declared states of emergency to harness additional resources and coordination, and Ohio should too. It shouldn’t take over 4,000 deaths and years of waiting to spur decisive action. The governor should act now.” 

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