Governor Larry Hogan has released a statewide public service announcement (PSA) urging parents to discuss the risks of heroin and opioid abuse with their children. The 30- and 60-second PSAs, titled “Before It’s Too Late,” feature actor Michael Kelly, star of an award-winning television series filmed in Maryland.
“Addressing this crisis that is ravaging communities across Maryland and the country has been and will continue to be a top priority of our administration,” said Governor Hogan. “This epidemic affects people of all walks of life, and opioid abuse is becoming more and more common among our youth. It is critical that parents talk to their children about the dangers of heroin and opioid abuse – before it’s too late. I would like to thank Mr. Kelly for partnering with us to raise awareness of this important issue.”
The launch of this statewide PSA follows sweeping action by the Hogan administration to continue combating the heroin and opioid crisis. On Wednesday, Governor Hogan signed an Executive Order declaring a State of Emergency in response to the crisis, activating the state’s emergency management authority and ramping up coordination between the state and local jurisdictions. The governor also announced $50 million in new funding to address the crisis and appointed his senior emergency management advisor to lead the state’s effort to combat the crisis.
Read more about the governor’s State of Emergency declaration here.
Upon taking office, Governor Hogan instituted the Heroin and Opioid Emergency Task Force, led by Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford. Over the last two years, the Hogan administration has made proactively addressing this crisis a cornerstone of the administration’s agenda. In January, the governor announced the administration’s enhanced 2017 Heroin Prevention, Treatment, and Enforcement Initiative, a multi-pronged strategy to tackle the evolving threat of heroin and opioid addiction. The initiative includes three important pieces of legislation: the Prescriber Limits Act of 2017, the Distribution of Opioids Resulting in Death Act, and the Overdose Prevention Act, as well as important budgetary actions, including $14 million in new funding to address the crisis. Read more about the governor’s initiative here.