McDowell County Sheriff Visits The White House

McDowell County Sheriff
McDowell County Sheriff
MCDOWELL COUNTY, WV (WOAY) – McDowell County Sheriff Martin West visited the White House and the US Capitol Hill last week as part of a group from West Virginia and California seeking help for the opioid crisis we are facing.
The West Virginia group is made up of a Circuit Judge and Supreme court candidate Will Thompson from Boone County. Council President Doug Copenhaver Jr. from Berkeley County, Rhonda Edmunds, Director of Lilly’s Place in Huntington, a non-profit caring for addicted babies; Dee Pierce Director of a non-profit, Bikers against Heroin in Berkeley County and McDowell Sheriff Martin West who started the suit against the three major pharmaceutical companies that flooded WV and McDowell County with their opioid greed.
The California group was made up of community leaders that face the same problems as West Virginia only with a greater number of people. Both groups met with Kelly Ann Conway, counselor for President Trump, Senator Capito, Senator Manchin, Congressman McKinley three Congresswomen from California, and Congressman Joseph Kennedy from Massachusetts.
Our Goal was to express our self with the real heart felt emotions that we face each day in our counties and state as we deal with the opioid crisis. Each member spoke from their hearts and we feel we were heard by all that we met with. Senator Manchin gave us three pages of bills that are currently before congress that focus on the opioid crisis and some have already been passed.
We know that federal money will be coming to states and we want them to make sure the right steps are in place for the money to benefit each state to help in this national crisis.
Sheriff West told them McDowell County is first or second per capita in over-dose deaths in West Virginia. We don’t have the first bed or any facilities to treat drug addiction.
Some spoke of their personal tragedies, and of friends lost because of opioid addictions. We were there for three days telling them our problems and asking what they could do to help as our leaders of our government.
There is a documentary of the work of these two groups from West Virginia and California that will be out in 2020. The group from California came to McDowell County in early spring and visited Berkley County, Cabell County and Boone County.
The West Virginia group is scheduled to visit California and return to the White House to follow up with our elected officials. The documentary is being directed by Van Jones, an attorney news commentator, and civil rights leader. It is being filmed by meridian hills pictures with brothers Brandon and Lance Kramer.
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