Murkowski Brings Alaska’s “Devastating” Synthetic Drug Problem to Attorney General’s Attention
Senator Stirs Up Senate Discussion over U.S. Postal Service Delivering Narcotics to Rural Alaska,
“We Need to Get on This Yesterday”
WASHINGTON, D.C. –Senator Lisa Murkowski today discussed rural Alaska’s battle against synthetic drug abuse and trafficking with Attorney General Eric Holder –spotlighting the fact that these drugs are increasingly being delivered through the United States Postal Service. Though the Postal Service’s role in disseminating illegal drugs has received scant national attention, Murkowski has already initiated efforts to crack down on distribution in high-risk Alaska regions.
In a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee hearing about the Department of Justice budget request for 2015, Murkowski and Holder discussed the synthetic drug epidemic Murkowski has seen ravaging Alaska villages and disrupting families. Murkowski told Holder that despite rural Alaska towns and villages being off the road system, these drugs are making their way to villages by United States Postal Service deliveries – a fact that startled Appropriations Chairwoman Barbara Mikulski (D-MD)
“We’re seeing some really devastating impacts in our very, very remote communities where the only way to get these drugs in is by the mail, and the drugs are coming into the community through the mail,” Murkowski said. “I don’t know if we call it an epidemic or a crisis but we are being beat on these issues.”
Holder agreed with Murkowski, saying “We need to work with the Postal Service to come up with ways to address these problems. It is shocking to see the amount of drugs that get pumped into communities all around this country through our mail system, and we have to deal with that.”
Murkowski wrapped up the testimony and line of questioning by stressing the need for urgency, saying “We need to get on this yesterday.”