House of Representatives Passes the STOP Act, Bringing U.S. One Step Closer to Closing Global Postal Loophole Fueling Opioid Epidemic
Washington, D.C. – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives came together across party lines to pass the Synthetics Trafficking and Overdose Prevention (STOP) Act, introduced by Representatives Mike Bishop (R-MI) and Bill Pascrell (D-NJ), by a vote of 353-52. The bill now heads to the Senate for debate and passage.
Under current law, private express mail carriers are required to provide advance electronic data (AED) on all inbound international packages shipped into to the U.S. from abroad. However, packages sent by foreign postal services and delivered by the U.S. Postal Service do not include this data, creating a glaring loophole that bad actors and drug traffickers regularly exploit to send fentanyl and other deadly opioids into the U.S. The STOP Act is an important tool in providing U.S. law enforcement with the critical information they need to curb the flow of synthetic opioids through the mail from abroad by requiring advanced electronic data (AED) on all inbound international packages, including those delivered by the USPS.
“Today, our leaders in Congress took a historic step towards passing one solution to our nation’s opioid crisis,” said Governor Tom Ridge, senior advisor to Americans for Securing All Packages. “But we must keep this momentum going. I am confident that the bill’s bipartisan champions in the Senate will lead the Senate into doing what’s right to protect the safety and security of American families. Given the number of families tragically affected by the opioid epidemic, it is time to send this bill to President Trump’s desk for his signature.”
“Synthetic opioids like fentanyl and carfentanil have touched nearly every community in our country,” said Juliette Kayyem, senior advisor to Americans for Securing All Packages. “It’s time to shut off the source. Today, we marked a milestone in the House of Representatives by passing comprehensive measures to close the loophole fueling the influx of synthetic opioids from abroad. Now, it is up to our senators to act to pass the STOP Act and stop these poisons from coming into our country.”
With hundreds of co-sponsors in the House of Representatives, the bill has also gained widespread bipartisan support in the Senate under the leadership of Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN). The bill has 34 co-sponsors in the Senate and has been endorsed by organizations on the frontlines of America’s opioid crisis, including the American Medical Association and the National Conference of State Legislatures.