EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. (KRDO) - El Paso County Congressman Doug Lamborn is once again pushing for funding to address the fentanyl crisis impacting Colorado's youth.
The "Protecting Kids from Fentanyl Act of 2023" aims to bring in $146 million in federal funding through the Department of Health and Human Services. The goal is to educate students of all ages and provide training and Narcan (a drug that can be administered to reverse the effects of an overdose) as well as training to teachers and school employees.
On Tuesday at District 11, Congressman Lamborn hosted a round table discussion with school administrators from around the county, as well as those personally affected by the lethal drug.
In 2022, officials said El Paso County saw 96 fentanyl-related overdoses. As a whole, Colorado saw more than 870 teens between the ages of 13 and 18 get hospitalized due to overdoses — many of which stemmed from fentanyl.
Because of that impact on communities around the state, it prompted Congressman Lamborn to push for the bill once again after it failed to get past the introduction stage last year.
"So much depends on also what happens at the local and state level. So this is a team effort. We all have to do everything we can, and I think that's why we're all here today, why we care so much." stated Lamborn.
Many of those in attendance shared their personal experiences with lost loved ones or how they’ve seen drug prevention strategies play out in their districts, and shared suggestions with the Congressman on what they'd like to see built into the legislation as it moves forward on Capitol Hill.