March 19, 2018

Sheila Vargas, Public Relations Director, 603-731-8051



CONCORD, N.H. – In response to President Trump’s visit to Manchester and discussion of his plan to combat opioid addiction, Michele Merritt, President and CEO of New Futures, released the following statement:

“New Hampshire’s addiction epidemic is an incredibly complex issue which requires our combined efforts and ingenuity to effectively overcome. New Futures was encouraged to hear President Trump’s support for expanding access to Medication Assisted Treatment, implementing Safe Prescribing Plans, and ensuring all first responders are supplied with naloxone. However, the President’s focus on criminal justice interventions, specifically the recommendation to seek the death penalty for drug dealers, is concerning,” said Merritt. “Beyond the clear issues with the death penalty proposal, it should be recognized that law enforcement policies are only one piece of a multi-faceted approach to curbing this epidemic.”

“Without state and federal investments to sustain and expand vital treatment programs, we will continue to fall behind in addressing this issue. Today President Trump visited and applauded the work of Manchester’s effective Safe Stations program, which relies extensively on Medicaid Expansion. Every day dozens of individuals with substance use disorder present at Safe Stations, where they are screened, enrolled in Medicaid Expansion and referred to addiction treatment.”

“Without Medicaid Expansion, Safe Stations simply do not work. Medicaid Expansion must be reauthorized by our state leaders this legislative session if we are to continue fighting back the scourge of addiction in this state,” Merritt continued. “We look forward to working with our national, state, and local leaders to find more ways to work directly to address our addiction epidemic, including reauthorizing Medicaid Expansion and ensuring federal funding is allocated to New Hampshire as part of President Trump’s plan.”

New Futures is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that advocates, educates and collaborates to improve the health and wellness of all New Hampshire residents through policy change.