NADDI Warns Congress That Drug Importation Will Worsen the Opioid Crisis

Recently, the National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators (NADDI) placed a series of ads opposing Congressional drug importation proposals in Washington DC-area newspapers. Their reasons for doing so reach into the heart of their purpose as investigators, “Their job becomes much harder if Congress passes laws allowing the importation of medications.”

The real danger to law enforcement comes from fentanyl, both in powder and pill form. The Boston Globe reports, “Last year, opioids were linked to 2,069 deaths in Massachusetts, a 15 percent increase from the year before. Fentanyl was found in 69 percent of those deaths in which a toxicology screen was available. In New Hampshire, 70 percent of opioid-related deaths last year were linked to fentanyl.” These numbers are replicated all over the United States.

The Boston Globe also notes, “Frantic attempts to destroy or discard the evidence often leave agents with a dangerous mess to clean, according to a DEA agent who raids clandestine labs. The scene becomes a hazardous-waste site that requires extraordinary protection for agents, who know that even casual contact with fentanyl can be lethal.”

In Ohio, Cleveland.com describes how a police officer in Cleveland had to be hospitalized after coming into contact with suspected fentanyl during the search of home there.

In May, an East Liverpool, Ohio officer nearly died after coming into contact with just a small amount of fentanyl powder, according to Cleveland.com.

A similar near-miss happened in July in Wisconsin, where a Menasha police officer nearly died after being exposed to fentanyl while at work, the Post Crescent reports.

Such incidents have pushed the Wisconsin State Crime Lab to offer its labs up for testing of any suspicious white powders or pills found at potential crime scenes, The Wisconsin State Journal reports.

NADDI trains law enforcement officers on dealing with deadly fentanyl, its analogues, and counterfeit pills made with them at crime scenes.

NADDI has provided training to over 1,200 law enforcement officers on the dangers of exposure to fentanyl and counterfeit opioids made with it. For additional information about NADDI trainings and the 28th Annual conference go to https://www.naddi.org/trainings/

To find our more information about training for your agency, contact Dan Zsido, NADDI National Training & Education Coordinator at dzsido@naddi.org