NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — U.S. Sen Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced Monday that he is asking for $100 million in funding for to curb the scourge of heroin in New York and across the country.
“New York City has become a hub for the heroin trade for the entire East Coast,” Schumer said.
As 1010 WINS’ Sonia Rincon reported, that is why Schumer wants the federal allocation for the U.S. Justice Department initiative called the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas Program – or HIDTA.
HIDTA is not tied to any agency, but it does help federal drug trafficking investigations with intelligence sand surveillance.
Schumer said the easy access in the reason is also driving the increase in heroin abuse.
Jeff Reynolds is executive director the Long Island Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, and said Long Island is “in the midst of a historic crisis.”
“Every time I walk into a funeral or a shiva call for a young person — which I’ve done a lot so far this year — I see the end result of unfettered drug access,” Reynolds said.
As WCBS 880’s Monica Miller reported, Reynolds said heroin is cheap – according to its users.
“And they’ll say it’s easier to get than beer,” he said.
Schumer said the federal allocation is needed to break up the drug pipeline from Mexico and New York City, “where large drug dealers take the heroin break it down and distribute it throughout the Northeast.”
Heroin seizures are already higher in 2014 than any year since 1991.
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