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Bertino-Tarrant measure to publicize information on opioid addiction becomes law

jbt opiate addiction 091117SPRINGFIELD—Information regarding heroin and prescription opioid abuse will be more readily available thanks to legislation signed into law today.

“We need to provide every possible resource and assistance we can as a state to address the heroin and opioid addictions problem many face throughout Illinois,” State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) said. “Addiction is hurting families throughout the entire state and now we can try to help provide the information they need.”

Will County saw a record number of heroin related-deaths in 2016, an increase of more than 40 percent from the previous year. According to the Will County coroner’s office, 77 people died in Will County due to opioid overdoses in 2016.

The new law would require the Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS) to create and maintain a website to educate people on heroin and prescription opioid abuse.

“This new website will get information and important resources to the families and people who need them,” Bertino-Tarrant said.

The website developed and maintained by DHS would include the warning signs of heroin and opioid addiction, helpful tips for parents on how to discuss the dangers of addiction with their children, available treatment options and services and other related information.

Bertino-Tarrant has actively tried to combat addiction-related problems in her district. She served as the co-chairwoman of the Young Adults Heroin Use Task Force and hosted heroin prevention forums in her district.

The new law goes into effect on January 1, 2018.

Sen. Bertino-Tarrant

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49th Senate District

Years served: 2013 - Present

Associated Representatives: Mark Batinick; Natalie A. Manley

Committee assignments: Appropriations II; Education (Chairperson); Labor; Licensed Activities and Pensions; Transportation.

Biography: Lifelong educator; former Will County superintendent and secretary of Will County Regional Board of School Trustees; B.A., Illinois State University; MS, University of St. Francis; EdD., Loyola.