Strong bi-partisan support for the proposed Opioid Action Plan - Watch my comments from the February 14, 2018 press conference.
State Sen. Chris Eaton of Brooklyn Center said working on opioids has brought Democrats and Republicans together at a tumultuous time in politics. Eaton, a Democrat, lost her daughter Ariel to an opioid overdose about a decade ago. Standing beside Eaton at the press conference Friday was Republican state Rep. Dave Baker, of Willmar, whose son Dan died of an overdose in 2011.
"It is completely bipartisan," Eaton said. "I've never seen everybody working together so closely, and so smoothly."
State Sen. Chris Eaton is planning to introduce legislation to encourage opiate treatment providers and doctors to break with an abstinence-based model and embrace evidence-based practices for treating addiction, the Minnesota Democrat told The Huffington Post.
Senator Chris Eaton, RN (DFL), represents Minnesota Senate District 40, which includes Brooklyn Center and Brooklyn Park. She serves as the ranking minority member of the Environment and Natural Resources Policy and Legacy Finance committee as well as a member of the Health and Human Services Finance and Policy committee and full Finance committee. Senator Eaton is also a member of the Opioid Prescribing Work Group run through the Minnesota Department of Human Services.
Brave politicians Rep. Dave Baker, R-Willmar, Sen. Chris Eaton, DFL-Brooklyn Center, joined Gov. Mark Dayton Wednesday in proposing a stewardship fee or tax on prescription opioids to raise funding to address the opioids epidemic. Sen Julie Rosen, R-Vernon Center, is also the bill sponsor in the Senate.
A Minnesota lawmaker who lost a daughter to a heroin overdose is proposing funding to hand out the anti-overdose medication naloxone at treatment centers and needle exchanges across the state.
Sen. Chris Eaton, DFL-Brooklyn Center, is also proposing a bill that would allow pharmacists to directly prescribe naloxone without a doctor's standing order.
In Minnesota, Ms. Eaton and a fellow state lawmaker, State Representative Dave Baker, see things differently. Like Mr. Griffin, they each lost a child to fatal overdoses, but they want the industry to pay for what they view as its role in the addiction crisis.
Their tax proposal would have raised about $20 million for addiction programs in Minnesota, but the measure faced stiff opposition from the pharmaceutical industry. Some state legislators said they felt “bullied” by pharmaceutical lobbyists to oppose the bill, according to Senator Tina Smith, the former Minnesota lieutenant governor who replaced Al Franken.