Learn about heroin and substance abuse
Dear Mr. Sosa,
When The President gives his State of the Union address tonight, sitting in the audience will be a parent who faced a tragedy too many Illinois parents will experience this year: the loss of a child to heroin addiction.
Two years ago, Highland Park resident Mark Filler’s 23-year-old son Jordan died of a heroin overdose. Mark has since created the Jordan Michael Filler Foundation, an organization that works to raise awareness about the dangers of substance abuse, connects at-risk teenagers with the help they need, and advocates for legislative changes to more effectively combat opioid addiction.
To help him in this effort, I invited Mark to be my guest tonight. Heroin abuse is an epidemic, killing someone in Chicago’s suburbs on average every three days. According to the the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Illinois’ overdose deaths rose more than eight percent from 2013 to 2014, and heroin and other opioids are “the main driver of overdose deaths.”
In addition to his work with the Foundation, Mark is a member of my Anti-Heroin Task Force, which brings community leaders together to develop solutions to the heroin epidemic, including increased access to the lifesaving drug naloxone, expanded treatment options and more funding for opioid overdose prevention.
I look forward to continuing my work with Mark and the task force to work toward reducing addiction and overdose in Illinois, and save families from this devastating trend.
Senator Mark Kirk
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