WASHINGTON, D.C. (LOOTPRESS) – This week, U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) introduced three pieces of legislation to combat the addiction crisis in West Virginia, and stop the flow of fentanyl in communities. The Combating Illicit Xylazine Act, the STOP Act 2.0, and the PREVENT Fentanyl Act will further coordinate efforts to disrupt the distribution of fentanyl, block efforts to ship illicit drugs into the U.S., and improve training to crack down on drug trafficking tactics.
“Fentanyl continues to have deadly consequences for communities across West Virginia, which is why our work to stop the flow of this harmful substance couldn’t be more urgent. That is why I introduced multiple pieces of legislation that build on previous efforts to prevent the shipment of fentanyl into our country, crack down on mixed substances that are making these drugs even deadlier, and improves our coordination and training across all levels. We have lost far too many West Virginians to overdoses, and I will continue my efforts to put forward solutions that prevent these drugs from entering our state,” Senator Capito said.
The Combating Illicit Xylazine Act:
Senator Capito introduced the Combating Illicit Xylazine Act to crack down on and schedule illicit Xylazine, the highly dangerous sedative increasing the number of fatal overdoses nationwide. Xylazine, also known as “tranq,” is an easily accessible veterinary tranquilizer that is being mixed with opioids, including fentanyl. Despite alarming reports about the rise of illicit xylazine – federal, state, and local law enforcement do not have the tools necessary to effectively crack down on dealers using it to increase their profits. This legislation would schedule illicit use, while preserving legal use for veterinary purposes.
The STOP Act 2.0:
Senator Capito, along with U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), introduced the STOP Act 2.0 to tackle the rise in illegal opioids entering the United States and West Virginia. The STOP Act 2.0 builds on the Synthetics Trafficking & Overdose Prevention (STOP) Act, legislation Senator Capito co-sponsored that was signed into law in 2018. The STOP Act prevents fentanyl and synthetic drug shipments from being smuggled into the U.S. through the mail by requiring advance electronic data (AED) to be included on all inbound international packages shipped through the U.S. Postal Service.
The PREVENT Fentanyl Act:
Senator Capito—along with Senators Klobuchar, Rick Scott (R-Fla.), and Gary Peters (D-Mich.)—introduced the Providing Resources for Exceptional Veterans to End Narcotic Trafficking of Fentanyl (PREVENT Fentanyl) Act to increase training for investigating cyber fentanyl trafficking crimes. Specifically, the legislation would allow the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) HERO Child-Rescue corps members, who currently focus on tackling child exploitation cases, to also assist in investigating fentanyl trafficking.
For more on Senator Capito’s efforts to fight the drug epidemic, click here.