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Department of Justice Announces More Than $341 Million in Grants to Combat America’s Addiction Crisis

Gerald Scroop

October 16, 2020

The Department of Justice today announced grant awards totaling more than $341 million to help fight America’s addiction crisis. Office of Justice Programs (OJP) Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan discussed this year’s grant awards during a roundtable discussion of mental health and addiction issues led by Second Lady Karen Pence.

“The addiction crisis has taken an enormous toll on America’s families and communities, eroding public health, threatening public safety and claiming tens of thousands of lives year after year,” said Attorney General William P. Barr. “Through comprehensive measures taken by this administration, we have been able to curtail the opioid epidemic, but new and powerful drugs are presenting exceptional challenges that we must be prepared to meet. The Justice Department’s substantial investments in enforcement, response, and treatment will help us overcome these challenges and work towards freeing Americans from abuse and addiction.”

“If we hope to defeat an enemy as powerful, persistent and adaptable as illicit drugs, we must be at least as determined and versatile, focusing our ingenuity and resources on curbing abuse and fighting addiction,” said OJP’s Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney Katharine T. Sullivan. “It was a privilege to join the Second Lady in announcing these investments, which will enable criminal justice officials and substance abuse, mental health and other medical professionals to pool their assets and bring the full weight of our public safety and treatment systems down on this epidemic that has already caused so much harm.”

Illegal drugs and illicit drug use have claimed the lives of nearly 400,000 Americans since the turn of the century. Powerful synthetic opioids like fentanyl are exacting an enormous toll on families and communities, and an emergence in the use of methamphetamines and other psychostimulants is drawing drug traffickers and driving up overdose rates. Three years ago, President Trump declared a Public Health Emergency and initiated a whole-of-government approach dedicated to ending this national tragedy. The Department of Justice has invested unprecedented levels of funding in combating the addiction crisis. The awards announced today build on those earlier investments.

Funding is made available through the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC), and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), components of OJP.

A full list of the awards, organized under specific grant programs and listing awardees by state, is available here.

Additional information about FY 2020 grant awards from the Office of Justice Programs can be found online at the OJP Award Data Page.

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