Opioids Crisis

Opioids Crisis



NWRA is supportive of congressional efforts to crack down on both the supply and demand of opioids by going after illicit suppliers of these powerful drugs while increasing treatment options for those who have become addicted.


The opioids crisis, which has been declared a public health emergency by the president, not only decreases the pool of employable individuals at a time when the waste and recycling industry is experiencing a shortage of workers, but also impacts those working in the industry who have family members and loved ones suffering from this addiction. As of January 1, 2018, the Department of Transportation mandates testing for four semi-synthetic opioids (i.e., hydrocodone, oxycodone, hydromorphone, oxymorphone) in addition to the existing DOT drug testing panel (that includes marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, PCP, and opiates).

NWRA has supported federal legislative efforts that would provide the Drug Enforcement Agency the ability to make grants to states to help with the cost of acquiring and disposing of controlled substances as a way of combatting the growing opioids crisis in America. NWRA has also supported legislative efforts preventing the shipment of powerful opioid drugs to the United States via the international mail system. NWRA is in favor of tough new requirements on the U.S. Postal Service and Customs and Border Protection to curb the flow of synthetic opioids into the U.S. particularly from places like China.

  • NWRA thanks Congress and the President for enacting the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act
  • NWRA supports efforts in cracking down on the over-prescription of opioids
  • NWRA supports increasing treatment options for those that have become addicted

Updated January 2020.