On December 21, 2020, Congress passed a final FY 2021 appropriations deal. This document outlines the final funding levels for NASADAD’s priority programs within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), including language from the Administration’s Congressional Justifications, as well as the House and Senate Appropriations Committees’ bill reports and final appropriations bill reports.
With increased attention on substance use during disasters due to the COVID-19 pandemic, NASADAD staff have revised an issue brief on the topic. The Disasters and Substance Use: Implications for the Response to COVID-19 brief includes data on recent disasters, policy recommendations, and spotlights on Louisiana and New York’s response to Hurricane Katrina and 9/11. NASADAD recommended the following:
- During a disaster, the federal government should coordinate with State alcohol and drug agencies given the link between trauma and substance use disorders.
- Policymakers should consider specifically referencing substance use disorders in the statute governing disaster declarations (Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act) to ensure a holistic and comprehensive response.
- Supplemental federal funding designed to help respond to substance use disorder needs during a large-scale disaster that impacts all States—such as COVID-19—should be routed through the Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment (SAPT) Block Grant, including enhanced flexibility regarding certain allowable uses.
NASADAD has released an updated appropriations overview to reflect the Senate Appropriation Committee’s introduction of several appropriations bills for FY 2021, including the Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS), Education, and Related Agencies funding bill. The document outlines the Senates’ recommended funding levels for NASADAD’s priority programs within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP).