GRANITE CITY — U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth on Monday used the backdrop of Chestnut Health Systems, a Granite City opioid treatment facility, to blast what she said is the disastrous impact the Senate Republicans’ healthcare proposal would have on the facility.
The current proposal before the Senate would slash funding for treatment while handing out a huge tax break of more than $25 billion to the pharmaceutical companies that helped create this epidemic in the first place, she said.
“Resolving our nation’s opioid crisis requires a comprehensive, fully funded effort from officials at every level of government, and from local community organizations like the Chestnut Health Systems” said Duckworth, D-Illinois. “It also requires stopping this harmful TrumpCare proposal that undermines local treatment programs like Chestnut’s in order to pay for massive tax breaks for big pharmaceutical companies that profit from the same addictions which are tearing families and communities across Illinois apart.”
Duckworth has long worked to address our nation’s opioid and heroin epidemic. Duckworth helped introduce the bipartisan Comprehensive Opioid Abuse Reduction Act (CARA), which was signed into law last year, to expand community-based prevention and treatment efforts to combat addiction to opioids and heroin and help state and local governments fight the opioid crisis in their communities. The law increases access to life-saving drugs such as naloxone through law enforcement and first responders. She also cosponsored the Jason Simcakoski PROMISE Act to ensure that the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the U.S. Department of Defense are working to reduce opioid addition amongst our Veterans.
Duckworth outlines agenda to support steel, other manufacturing
Duckworth met Monday with Granite City steelworkers to discuss her efforts to bring back manufacturing jobs to the American steel industry after an estimated 2,300 steelworkers lost their jobs just after Christmas in 2015 when U.S. Steel idled their Granite City mill.
During her meeting, Duckworth highlighted the importance of making investments to support American manufacturers and improve trade agreements to bolster the U.S. steel industry.
“I opposed TPP in large part because it didn’t do enough to stop the currency manipulation and illegal steel dumping that contributed to over 2,000 Granite City steelworkers getting laid off through no fault of their own,” said Duckworth. “Many of those hardworking Illinoisans are still struggling to feed their families and pay their mortgages today. That’s why I’m pushing back against President Trump’s efforts to divest from American manufacturing while also working to improve trade agreements for the U.S. steel industry.”
President Trump’s proposed budget would eliminate programs like the Manufacturing Extension Partnership, which helps manufacturers innovate and improve their productivity so they can compete in the 21st Century global economy.
Duckworth has been a vocal advocate in the Senate for anti-dumping measures and for the use of American-made steel in federal pipeline projects. She has also worked to build a skilled workforce to support American manufacturing.