A new coalition fighting drug addiction is urging President Biden to oppose controversial government-licensed injection sites where junkies can shoot up — and instead provide addicts the recovery treatment afforded his son, Hunter Biden.
The group NorthAmericaRecovers.org — an umbrella organization consisting of 21 groups including Mothers Against Drug Addiction and Deaths — unveiled mobile digital ads in DC Monday with a photo of a mother of a homeless fentanyl addict saying, “Please Help My Son Escape Addiction the Way You Helped Hunter.”
New York City has two government-licensed, supervised consumption sites called “overdose prevention centers.”
The group said other cities such as Philadelphia are seeking federal waivers from federal prohibition to operate sanctioned drug use sites.
The ads are aimed at persuading Biden and his Justice Department to reject “supervised drug consumption sites,” where taxpayer-funded healthcare workers assist anyone over 18 to inject or smoke fentanyl and other hard drugs. The goal of the consumption sites is to prevent drug overdose deaths.
The debate comes amid record fentanyl-linkedoverdose deaths in New York City and across the country. The synthetic opioid is at least 50 times more powerful than morphine and flows into the states from the southern border.
“We as a coalition urge President Biden to reject these sites in favor of first creating a recovery-focused system for addressing our addiction crisis,” the Coalition said in a statement on the organization’s new website, NorthAmericaRecovers.org. “This means we must allocate sufficient funding for evidence-based intervention, treatment, and recovery programs.”
Jacqui Berlinn, the mom in the ad with her photos of her addicted son, said, “The reason I’m doing this is because I’m afraid that if Biden legalizes these so-called `supervised drug use sites, he will consign my son, and millions like him, to a life of addiction and homelessness.”
“The U.S. needs an addiction care system whose goal is recovery from addiction, not enabling addiction. We reduced cigarette smoking by eliminating special places for people to smoke, not by creating them. People recover from addiction in rehab clinics, not in bars.
The mom activist continued, “President Biden is actively considering denying my son the care that he rightly fought for years for his son Hunter to receive. Today, Hunter is in recovery from his years-long alcohol and cocaine addiction. Does President Biden believe that Hunter would have been better off today had the city of Los Angeles sent him to a government drug use site instead of rehab?”
In the photo used of her in the ad, Berlinn said she was protesting San Francisco’s supervised drug consumption site with other members of our Mothers against Drug Addiction and Death, last year.
She noted that San Francisco Mayor London Breed closed down a licensed drug consumption last month following the protests and California Gov. Gavin Newsom vetoed the legalization of government drug sites across California.
“It’s time for a change. It’s time for Biden to publicly declare that he will not legalize government drug dens and instead will build the addiction recovery system that America needs,” Berlinn said.
But the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene claims the two Big Apple supervised injection sites have been a success in curbing overdoses. The sites have been used over 52,000 times by 2,227 drug users from November of 2021 through 2022.
“Staffers have intervened in more than 670 overdoses to prevent potential injury or death. During this time period, emergency medical services were activated ten times in response to overdose events, and there have been zero deaths,” the department said in a recent release.