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Applying the Evidence: Legal and Policy Approaches to Address Opioid Use Disorder in the Criminal Justice and Child Welfare Settings.

The Addiction and Public Policy Initiative hosted its inaugural event on October 30th at Georgetown University. The convening, entitled Applying the Evidence was organized in partnership with Georgetown University’s Business for Impact. Policymakers, leaders in criminal justice and law enforcement, experts in addiction treatment, many of whom have lived experience, came together to discuss immediate interventions to reduce overdose deaths, and steps that can be taken to move community responses from rescue to recovery.
 
The Initiative also released Applying the Evidence: Legal and Policy Approaches to Address Opioid Use Disorder in the Criminal Justice and Child Welfare Settings. The report provides policymakers with recommendations to improve access to treatment using medications for opioid use disorder in the criminal justice and child welfare systems.

“The job before us now is to move from rescue to recovery, to being the work of building communities of recovery.” – Regina LaBelle

Michael Botticelli, former Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy under President Obama, led a conversation on “What’s Next in the Addiction Epidemic”. He was joined by Tracie Gardner, Vice President of Policy Advocacy, Legal Action Center and the Mayor of Huntington, West Virginia, Steve Williams.
 
Leaders from across the country provided their perspectives on implementing best practices in their own communities and at the national level. Speakers discussed issues such as: access to medication in correctional institutions and drug courts; the intersection of addiction policies relating to child welfare; models for policy reform; and next steps at local, state, and national levels.

Watch the event recording here to see panelists share their experience and expertise on various issues relating to addiction policy in the U.S.