Hearing Focused On “America’s Heroin Epidemic at the Border: Local, State and Federal Law Enforcement Efforts to Combat Illicit Narcotic Trafficking”
PHOENIX – Governor Doug Ducey today testified before a special field hearing of the United States Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee titled, “America’s Heroin Epidemic at the Border: Local, State and Federal Law Enforcement Efforts to Combat Illicit Narcotic Trafficking.”
Governor Ducey joined law enforcement and elected officials at local, state and federal levels to discuss the growing heroin epidemic in our country – and particularly Arizona’s role as a major smuggling corridor and distribution hub as a border state.
“Data shows that, from 2012 to 2014, there were at least 458 drug seizures in 30 other states with a nexus back to Arizona,” said Governor Ducey. “Heroin is no longer ‘someone’s else’s’ problem. It’s America’s problem. And Arizona is the front door.”
The governor highlighted statistics on the growing numbers of drug interdictions, apprehensions, hospitalizations and usage rates, as well as related cumulative effects on taxpayers, communities and American society in general.
“Some of these damages can’t be undone. But they can be prevented,” added Governor Ducey. “And we’re taking action by aggressively targeting the supply. Since the creation of the Arizona Border Strike Force Bureau just over two months ago, we’ve already seized more than $2.2 million, multiple firearms, nearly 4,000 lbs. of marijuana, 73 pounds of meth, and nearly 19 lbs. of heroin – more than was seized in all of 2014.
“We’ve seen measurable success in just a short time, with a short list of personnel, few resources, and through minimal targeted operations. Now imagine what we could do with more.”
The governor called upon federal officials to work with Arizona on his border strike force plan with greater collaboration, more funding and enhanced assets for combatting border-related crime.
“Arizona can, and will, do a lot to slam the door on these cartels, but we need your help. If you are serious about turning the tide on the drug epidemic ravaging our nation, join us. Arizona is one the front line, and we need your support.”
Read Governor Ducey's testimony here.