April 2014 ~ Stateline Midwest »
Since 1996, states have had the authority under federal law to require welfare recipients to undergo drug testing.
In recent years, more and more legislatures have given serious consideration to using this authority, including a handful of states in the Midwest. Kansas and Minnesota are among the nine U.S. states with drug-testing laws already in place, and according to the Center for Law and Social Policy, at least 30 states considered bills last year (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan and North Dakota among them). 

Just one day after Zogenix, the maker of the new painkiller Zohydro, filed a federal law suit challenging the Massachusetts ban of the drug, the first hearing was held Tuesday.  

U.S. District Court Judge Rya Zobel, according to the AP, indicated that the drug company may have a point....

Gov. Peter Shumlin announced yesterday, according to the Burlington Free Press, restrictions that will make it harder for doctors to prescribe the new FDA approved painkiller Zohydro. His announcement follows last week's ban of the drug by Massachusetts. 

After a community faces a violent tragedy—like Sandy Hook, Conn., or Aurora, Colo., or Tucson, Ariz.—members of the community and policymakers alike are thirsty for solutions. One program many communities are looking to is Mental Health First Aid.

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Concerned about the rise in drug-related health problems among newborns, Indiana lawmakers unanimously approved a measure in February that takes a first step in trying to address Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome.

One in four adults will suffer from a mental health illness in any given year, according to the National Council for Community Behavioral Health Care. The council’s Mental Health First Aid program is a nationally recognized eight-hour training to teach how to help people in an emergency situation stemming from mental illness or substance abuse. A few states have begun to adopt the program to help first responders and others handle mental health and substance abuse crises.

One in four adults will suffer from a mental health illness in any given year, according to the National Council for Community Behavioral Health Care. 
“You’re more likely to see someone...
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Wisconsin legislators agreed in January to invest $4 million over the next two years on a plan to improve the state’s mental health system, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports. Passage of the multi-bill package culminated months of legislative work that began in early 2013 with formation of the Speaker’s Task Force on Mental Health.

The heroin overdose deaths of actors Philip Seymour Hoffman and Cory Monteith of the television show "Glee" have raised public attention about the rising abuse of drugs. Some states are trying to address the increase in overdose deaths from heroin and other opiates by making naloxone more readily available to addicts.

Yesterday the Office of National Drug Control Policy urged that first responders be equipped with naloxone, a medication used to counteract opiate overdoses. Some states already have laws on the books to do just that.

In a CSG research brief...

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