- Manchin and Rubio introduced the PIPES Act, a bipartisan bill, in a press launch on Friday.
- It comes after the announcement of a federal grant for damage reduction services similar to drug use.
- Earlier this week, the White House and HHS denied the funding would go to crack pipes.
Sens. Joe Manchin and Marco Rubio launched a bipartisan monthly bill on Friday that would block federal money from becoming applied to invest in and distribute applications employed to just take medication, like crack pipes and syringes.
The Blocking Illicit Paraphernalia for Trade Programs Act, or PIPES Act, was introduced by Manchin, a Democrat from West Virginia, and Rubio, a Republican from Florida, in a push launch.
“Each individual American and West Virginian has been impacted by the drug epidemic that has killed about 101,000 People in america from April 2020 to April 2021,” Manchin mentioned. “Although this is a heartbreaking concern that will have to be totally resolved by the federal federal government, applying taxpayer money to obtain paraphernalia for individuals struggling with compound use condition is not the solution.”
“Everyone is aware of a person who has struggled with addiction, and unfortunately, numerous have missing a liked just one from the condition,” Rubio stated, incorporating: “We want to do far more, but sending drug paraphernalia to addicts is not the reply.”
The PIPES Act would ban federal funds from being used to invest in needles or syringes for the injection of an unlawful compound, the push release claimed. It also explained there would be an exception in the case of “a significant threat of hepatitis an infection or HIV outbreak owing to injection drug use.”
The bill also maintains federal money can’t be utilized to acquire or distribute pipes used for smoking cigarettes illegal prescription drugs.
The bill comes just after the Office of Health and Human Services introduced in December a $30 million grant for hurt reduction providers that focuses on preventing overdose deaths and lessening health risks linked with drug use. This sort of companies incorporate providing sterile syringes, protected-smoking cigarettes kits, and overdose-avoidance kits.
Fox News seized on the grant this week, with hosts Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity pushing the assert that taxpayer bucks had been becoming made use of to invest in crack pipes.
White Home press secretary Jen Psaki responded on Wednesday, telling reporters crack pipes ended up “under no circumstances a section” of the safe and sound-smoking kits. She said this sort of kits may include “alcohol swabs, lip balm, other products to advertise hygiene and lower the transmission of ailments like HIV and hepatitis.”
HHS also issued a statement Wednesday that claimed: “No federal funding will be utilised straight or by way of subsequent reimbursement of grantees to put pipes in harmless smoking cigarettes kits.”
Prior to introducing the PIPES Act, Manchin and other senators also sent a letter to HHS on Thursday asking about the grant system. The letter states that some damage reduction groups involve pipes in their harmless smoking kits, citing two Canada-dependent groups, Towards the Coronary heart and Inside Health. It also reported the HHS grant does not explicitly prohibit the cash from remaining utilised on pipes.
HHS did not straight away respond to Insider’s ask for for remark.