Skip to main content
State Seal State Seal State Seal
Home Button Home Button Home Button

Ohio House Passes Bill to Combat Fentanyl Crisis, Protect Ohio Children from Sexual Abuse

April 24, 2024
Cindy Abrams News

Press Release Thumbnail

COLUMBUS –The Ohio House of Representatives today passed House Bill 230, legislation to directly combat drug and human trafficking in Ohio, announced bill sponsor, State Rep. Cindy Abrams (R-Harrison). Abrams sponsored the legislation alongside State Rep. D.J. Swearingen (R-Huron). 

House Bill 230 comes as a result of the staggering increase in drug overdoses, specifically fentanyl poisoning, in Ohio and throughout the United States. Since the bill’s initial introduction on June 27, 2023, roughly 3,624 Ohioans and 57,380 Americans have died of fentanyl poisoning, according to statistic provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  

“The crisis our state and our country are facing is catastrophic,” said Abrams during House session. “House Bill 230 will save lives. It is what Ohio needs to combat the drug and human trafficking epidemics.” 

Key provisions of the bill are outlined below: 

  • Increases drug trafficking charges for cocaine, fentanyl-related compounds, heroin and methamphetamine; 
  • Expands the definition of human trafficking; 
  • Establishes a 5-year mandatory minimum prison term if an individual is convicted of or pleads guilty to a fentanyl-related death;  
  • Designates August as “Fentanyl Poisoning Awareness Month”; 
  • Requires public schools to instruct students on the dangers of fentanyl; and  
  • Allows law enforcement to conduct oral fluid testing. 

The Ohio House also passed House Bill 322 sponsored by Abrams. This legislation will allow prosecutors to pursue criminal penalties against mandatory reporters who fail to report child abuse and individuals who demonstrate a pattern of inappropriate behavior towards minors. 

“We have a collective responsibility to protect Ohio children, and House Bill 322 will allow us to do so,” said Abrams. “We know when something is wrong, and we must speak up for the sake of our children and the safety or our communities.” 

Both pieces of legislation now head to the Ohio Senate for further consideration.