SALEM, Ore. (KPTV) — Families affected by Oregon’s drug addiction crisis are asking state lawmakers for help.
Cathy McInnis is one of those mothers fighting for more resources in the state. She lost her daughter to alcohol addiction on March 1, 2020.
“She was in rehab and she passed away,” McInnis said.
Katie Buckle, 28, has died after years of battling alcohol addiction.
“There was trauma in her life, and Katie also suffered from depression and anxiety,” McInnis said. “She felt very depressed and lonely because of the situations that had happened to her. The addiction over time got worse.”
McInnis said her daughter’s relapses had become more frequent and there was an urgent need to get her into treatment.
“Making phone calls (I heard), ‘We don’t have room. We don’t have room,'” McInnis said. “There was no help.”
She said she couldn’t find any resources in Oregon to help her daughter. California was the next best option.
“We were able to get into a facility right away,” McInnis said. “You can call, they have a bed. There’s a room for her right now.
But the situation was so dire for Buckle that she died while in rehab.
OREGON (KPTV) – Startling new research shows that Oregon now ranks 2nd in the county for substance abuse and last for access to treatment. With the increase…
“She was there 48 hours,” McInnis said.
In his grief, McInnis is now pushing for more addiction and mental health resources in Oregon.
“It’s hard as a mother, your child is not supposed to go before you,” she said. “I will continue this fight for (Buckle), but above all I will also fight for the other people who live in our state. Where is our help? Where is the money to help support this?
FOX 12 has reached out to Governor Kate Brown’s office about what the state is doing to address this issue.
The governor touched on the issue briefly in his state of the state address on Thursday.
“Expanding access to behavioral health services and prevention, treatment and recovery from substance use disorders is critical,” Brown said. “I will continue to partner with the Legislature to finalize significant investments in behavioral health this year.”
On Friday, Brown’s office said during the 2021 legislative session that the governor had worked with the legislature to pass $350 million in investments in behavioral health and system reforms. A spokesperson said his office met with Oregon Recovers, the Commission on Alcohol and Drug Policy and key stakeholders to work on solutions.
A spokesperson said the state has already provided $31 million in new funding for treatment programs.
Brown’s office said later that month that the Measure 110 Oversight and Accountability Council would award up to an additional $302 million to behavioral health resource networks.
A spokesperson said the governor recognizes the workforce crisis in a number of health care areas that address addiction treatment. His office said the governor ordered state agencies to develop retention bonuses, which were distributed in November.
During the 2022 legislative session, two bills aim to deal with the addiction crisis.
HB 4004 would require the Oregon Health Authority to distribute grants to behavioral health care providers for staff compensation and workforce retention and recruitment. HB 4085 would give a parent or guardian the ability to admit a child with or without that child’s consent to an OHA or Department of Human Services approved inpatient treatment facility or program. Oregon.
Copyright 2022 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.