Governor DeWine looks for answers to drug epidemic during state tour


    (WKEF/WRGT)

    DAYTON, Ohio (WKEF/WRGT) - Ohio Governor Mike DeWine is touring through the state in an effort to find answers on how to handle the drug epidemic.

    He made his first stop in Dayton on Thursday, where he met with local leaders. He said there's a lot of lessons other communities in the state can learn from Montgomery County, its Community Overdose Action Team (COAT) and how it has handled the problem.

    During the discussion with police chiefs and others who dedicate their time to the battle, they pointed out to DeWine that the focus is now more on methamphetamine than on opioids.

    (WKEF/WRGT)

    The governor's response was that there will always unfortunately be some sort of drug problem, but handling the next type is a matter of staring ahead of it through prevention programs, and looking at addition and mental health as a single issue. That's why DeWine said he wanted to hear from leaders about what has worked and what hasn't.

    "What we're going to do now is we're gathering facts at this point," he said. "We're going to go to the state legislature is the next month or so with a very specific request; a request for a package to deal with our drug problem."

    The school leaders, child welfare groups and even doctors broke down some of the main points for him as part of the discussion. They also brought up what needs to be changed, including HIPAA restrictions for law enforcement working with drug users.

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