Wisconsin drug treatment center says opioid task force should help

NOW: Wisconsin drug treatment center says opioid task force should help

Charles Schrauth has been helping people overcome addiction for 30 years.

His patients tell him opiates are easy to come by.

"We have a lot of disclosure of people telling us how easy it is to get opiates, and it's very poorly monitored," Schrauth said.

Schrauth works at SALS Addiction Treatment in Waukesha. Director Peter Brunzelle says opioid sales are more regulated than they used to be, but there are still companies profiting off addiction.

"People should be able to earn a living, but not one that people are getting sick by. So if it's making someone sick, and that's the profit, that doesn't make any sense."

Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Tuesday he will back local government efforts like Wisconsin's to go after drug manufacturers with deceptive practices or reckless sales.

"We will use criminal penalties," Sessions said. We will use civil penalties. We will use whatever laws and tools we have to hold people accountable."

Brunzelle says the move is a little late. The state now heavily regulates doctor prescriptions, but the new task force can do nothing but help.

"I think we're looking backward a little bit, and saying where should we have been," Brunzelle said. "But it's also good obviously moving forward to learn where we come from, and it's good that they're at least starting to take that action now."

There were 330 opioid related deaths in Milwaukee County last year.

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