National Sheriffs’ Association (NSA) Issues Statement Opposing Legislation on Prescription Drug Importation

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

NSA Executive Director and CEO Jonathan Thompson issued the following statement today regarding Congressional legislation that would allow for the importation of prescription drugs.

“Sheriffs have been very vocal about their concerns and opposition to drug importation from foreign countries. In fact, NSA, in representation of the more than 3,000 elected Sheriffs across the United States, sent a letter to President Trump on August 8, 2018, requesting that the “Administration carefully weigh the potential harmful impact of drug importation on public safety and public health; and…take drug importation off the table of consideration.”

In that letter to the President, NSA noted that:

  1. Drug importation would increase the threat of illegitimate products entering the United States, fueling criminal organizations’ activities and profits;
  2. Drug importation proposals would worsen the opioid crisis – a crisis that has already grown substantially worse due to the powerful opioid fentanyl and fentanyl analogue-laced counterfeit pills being produced by illegal trafficking organizations, including China, and reaching the United States through Canada and Mexico, and;
  3. Already overburdened law enforcement and regulatory capacity would be unable to ensure a safe prescription drug supply under importation.

CEO Thompson reiterated today that “NSA opposes any legislation that further exposes the United States to counterfeit and adulterated medications from illegitimate foreign pharmacy websites and criminal organizations. Given the current crisis already faced by law enforcement with illegal drugs and the abuse of prescription drugs, now is the not the time for the enactment of drug importation legislation that would only exacerbate that crisis in public health and safety.” 

Released January 15, 2019