Ahead of Trump Administration Summit on Opioid Crisis, ASAP Urges Action to Close the Postal Drug Pipeline
Unclosed Loophole in Global Postal System Allows Over 1.3 Million Unscreened and Potentially Dangerous Packages into the U.S. Every Day
Washington, D.C. – As members of the Trump administration and congressional leaders prepare to host a summit on solutions to the nationwide opioid today, Americans for Securing All Packages urges all elected officials in Washington to support closing a major security gap in the postal system that helps fuel the health crisis. While packages sent through private carriers must include advanced electronic data (AED) used by law enforcement to screen and stop dangerous material, including deadly drugs such as fentanyl, packages shipped via foreign postal services do not require the same information. A new bipartisan report from the United States Senate Homeland Security Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations (PSI) found that only 36 percent of foreign packages delivered by the USPS include AED, and that the limited data provided is too low quality to be useful, meaning over 1.36 million unscreened and potentially dangerous packages enter the country every day. As a result, the report found that online drug traffickers prefer and recommend the use of the postal system for shipping synthetic opioids and other illegal drugs into the country.
“We are pleased that the Trump administration continues to recognize the importance of working towards solutions to end this terrible health crisis,” said Governor Tom Ridge, senior advisor to ASAP. “It is crucial that any comprehensive solution focuses not only on treatment and addiction prevention, but on preventing these deadly drugs from reaching American families in the first place. Closing the postal loophole is a key step in cutting off the drug pipeline, and we encourage Congress and all government officials to support and pass the STOP Act.”
“Too many American families have been impacted by this national health tragedy,” said Juliette Kayyem, senior advisor to ASAP. “The STOP Act provides a clear, common sense solution to help close the international pipeline of opioids that are feeding the epidemic. We urge Washington to act as soon as possible in passing and implementing this legislation.”
The Synthetics Trafficking and Overdose Prevention (STOP Act) would help close the drug pipeline by requiring AED on all foreign packages entering the country, including those delivered by the USPS. The STOP Act currently has 30 co-sponsors in the Senate and 252 co-sponsors in the House of Representatives, and is endorsed by those on the front lines of the opioid crisis, including the Fraternal Order of Police, the American Medical Association and the National Conference of State Legislatures. The President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis also called for the bill’s passage in its final report.