Tackling the Drug Epidemic

The drug crisis in Kentucky is the public safety challenge of our lifetime, and Attorney General Cameron is committed to using every resource available to combat this epidemic.

In 2020 alone, drug overdose deaths in Kentucky increased by nearly 50%. This scourge, brought on by the opioid epidemic, exacerbated by deadly fentanyl, and continuing with the threat of methamphetamines, must be ended.

Historic Opioid Agreement

In July of 2021, after long and hard-fought negotiations, the Attorney General's office reached a historic agreement with opioid companies for their role in fueling the opioid epidemic. The agreement returns more than $460 million to the Commonwealth and provides state and local governments with substantial funds to help Kentuckians who struggle with addiction by supporting opioid abatement programs. 

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This agreement was reached with opioid distributors AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health, and McKesson, as well as Johnson & Johnson, for its role in manufacturing and marketing opioids. Attorney General Cameron collaborated with attorneys general across the country to investigate how the distributors failed to fulfill their legal duty by shipping opioids to pharmacies that submitted suspicious drug orders and how Johnson & Johnson misled patients and doctors about the addictive nature of opioid drugs. The agreement does not conclude the process, but it is a major next step to return these settlement dollars to the Commonwealth.

House Bill 427

During the 2021 legislative session, Attorney General Cameron joined forces with legislators, KLC, and KACo to support House Bill 427, which is a collaborative agreement among the Commonwealth and local governments to distribute the settlement proceeds from lawsuits against certain manufacturers and distributors of opioids. 

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The bill unanimously passed both the House and the Senate and distributes 50% of any settlement proceeds to the Commonwealth, which will be managed by the Kentucky Opioid Abatement Advisory, and 50% of any settlement proceeds to local governments. This bill also includes certification and reporting requirements that will help prevent fraud and waste, ensuring every dollar ends up where it is needed most. 

Casey's Law

The Matthew Casey Wethington Act for Substance Abuse Intervention, commonly known as “Casey’s Law,” allows family members and friends to secure court-ordered drug treatment for a loved one struggling with a substance use disorder. Attorney General Cameron is defending Casey's Law in court so that Kentucky families do not lose this important method for connecting to necessary treatment services.