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Battling Opioid Epidemic In North Carolina

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Note: this program is a rebroadcast from December 15, 2016.

President Obama signed legislation this week allocating $1 billion dollars to address the nation's worsening opioid crisis. Overdose deaths are on the rise, and current policies are inadequate in addressing the issues. 

Host Frank Stasio speaks with Louise Vincent, a recovering addict, who lost her child, Selena, to a drug overdose. He also speaks with officer Donnie Varnell about how the law enforcement community is trying to address the problem. Also joining the conversation is WUNC data reporter Jason deBruyn and Dr. Robyn Jordan, who works in several Triangle addiction clinics and teaches at the UNC School of Medicine.

The North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition offers information and resources for those seeking assistance. 

Laura Lee was the managing editor of The State of Things until mid February 2017. Born and raised in Monroe, North Carolina, Laura returned to the Old North state in 2013 after several years in Washington, DC. She received her B.A. in political science and international studies from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2002 and her J.D. from UNC-Chapel Hill School of Law in 2007.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
Jason deBruyn is the WUNC data reporter, a position he took in September, 2016.