Melania Trump Speaks Out About Substance Abuse Issue In Our Country
Recently, our new First Lady has held a round table meeting to address the opioid crisis in this county and the well being of our children, as they are the future of our nation.
"The well-being of children is of the utmost importance to me and I plan to use my platform as first lady to help as many kids as I can," said Trump, who invited 10 guests to the White House State Dining Room.
She invited 10 guests to the White House State Dining Room. The group consisted of NJ Gov. Chris Christie, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, as well as Kellyanne Conway, the President’s counselor, and others who have dealt with substance abuse in their family.
"(The) roundtable is about listening and learning, She wants to speak with as many people as possible and get their feedback on ways she can use her role as first lady to help with this epidemic."
Trump noted that we need to focus on educating our youth on drug prevention in order to teach them before they are exposed to these addictive substances.
"With the many issues (children) face as they are growing up, drug addiction, especially opioid abuse, is one of those issues, I look forward to working alongside the Presidential Opioid Commission, and people such as yourself, to do all we can to teach children the dangerous consequences of drug abuse." said Trump.
The objective at the roundtable meeting was the same at her recent event in New York City last week. She aimed to bring this to the attention of both a wide ranged audience as well as the group of officials chosen for the roundtable meeting.
"Whether it is drug addiction, bullying, poverty, disease, trafficking, illiteracy or hunger, it is the children who are hit first and hardest in any country," Trump mentioned at the luncheon. "And as we all know, the future of every nation rests with the promise of their young people."
The large effect of this addiction crisis in our nation is the reason for it’s importance in our First Lady’s plans. Overdose rates have been alarming in cities all across our country.
"As more young Americans, families and communities struggle to overcome the stigma and the suffering, the first lady's leadership is vital," Conway told CNN. "By leading open and honest discussions about the urgency and scale of this opioid crisis, and hearing the stories and solutions from across the country, the first lady joins the President in telling the nation we are unified and committed to helping."
Recently, President Trump has decided to make strides toward combatting this epidemic.
"The opioid crisis is an emergency and I'm saying officially right now it is an emergency," said President Trump. "We're going to draw it up and we're going to make it a national emergency. It is a serious problem, the likes of which we have never had."
Currently our government is still processing this as an official declaration.
"We certainly welcome the first lady's interest in this issue," says Gary Mendell, who is the founder and CEO of a national addiction recovery and prevention nonprofit called Shatterproof. In 2011 he lost his son to a drug overdose.
"So far, the administration has talked about the opioid crisis facing our country but has yet to undertake specific actions that will help those suffering today," he said.
A spokesman from the White House explained that the National Emergency status is still pending.
"The President's policy advisers are working through the details with all of the relevant components and agencies. Right now these actions are undergoing a legal review," he said.
Trump has been especially mindful of the addiction crisis since March and in May he approved the 2018 budget request for $500 million for drug recovery and prevention uses.
NJ Gov. Chris Christie has been leading a committee who is taking action on combatting this pressing issue. They discuss research goals, limiting the length of prescriptions, as well as prevention, treatment and education.
Mendell has encouraged Melania to use her platform and influence to speak out on combatting this issue.
"The most powerful thing Mrs. Trump can do is help remove the stigma that surrounds addiction or substance use disorder," he said. "Though stigma can seem harmless, we know it isolates people and discourages them from seeking treatment, directly damaging their chances of recovery."
She follows former first ladies who have made efforts toward tackling our nation’s drug issue.
In the 1980’s the concept of ‘Just Say No’ went viral and had a great effect on people in America. Nancy Raegan’s quote, “"Say yes to your life. And when it comes to drugs and alcohol, just say no," has become a main essence of her remembrance.
"Throughout her husband's campaign, Mrs. Trump met families who had been affected in one way or another by drug addiction," Grisham said. "She has been very thoughtful about her platform, and recognizes that this is one of the ways she can help effect positive change with children across the country."
Tump announced that she would continue speaking out on the topic while we handle this issue.
"I'm here today to listen and learn from all of your stories and hope you will feel free to give me your thoughts and opinions on how best I can help," she said.