WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- In the wake of a series of heroin-related deaths and crimes across Westchester County and New York State, U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer has called upon the National Drug Control Policy to outline a concrete plan for the creation of an information-sharing database to expose heroin and other drug-related crimes.
The database, "DrugStat," is part of Schumer's proposed two-prong attack to combat the rise in drug crimes across New York. Schumer is also urging the Senate to increase funding for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grants.
These block grants provide funds to the states to supplement substance-abuse prevention and treatment programs.
“The victims of heroin use are too often our kids, full of potential, whose lives are altered in an instant by these terrible and addictive drugs," Schumer said in a statement. "More must be done to curtail the spike in heroin use and other drugs, and rescue more New York residents from the bane of drug addiction.”
Schumer pointed to the rise in prescription drug abuse as one of the prime factors fueling the growth in heroin use, as heroin has become a cheaper, more accessible alternative to prescription narcotics.
In 2013, the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New York office seized 144 kilograms of heroin, worth roughly $43 million, which is 20 percent of the DEA’s nationwide seizures.