Wisconsin United We CAN

In 2013, Wisconsin saw 227 overdose deaths and emergency responders deploy Narcan (a drug that reverses an overdose death) over 5000 times while the needle exchange programs reported another 1108 deployments for a total of 6108 successful reversals of opiate deaths.   This was a potential loss of 17 people EVERY DAY for a YEAR in Wisconsin.

Based on the number of deaths so far in 2014, we are on track to double the numbers from last year if the trend continues as at the current pace. This is a potential loss of 34 people EVERY DAY for a YEAR in Wisconsin.

Wisconsin United We C.A.N. (Change Addiction Now) is committed to families who have a loved one with an addiction. We know that addiction impacts every member of the family and that recovery for the family is a missing piece in solving the epidemic of addiction. The vision of WIUCAN is that united, we can change addiction now by restoring families structures through education, hope, and recovery.

We are asking for your help to fund our efforts to save our families and the lives of our loved ones with this disease. With 1 in 3 families touched by addiction, it is likely you know someone who is impacted.

Using evidence-based research, we have identified the following areas as key focus areas for Wisconsin:
• Develop outreach programs for families across Wisconsin
• Expand awareness of the online support program membership
• Provide peer-to-peer family support/recovery coach training
• Provide training opportunities on the use of Narcan
• Provide learning opportunities for members and the public on addiction-related topics taught by topic experts
• Develop parent informational packets available online
• Provide education and a marketing campaigns around the Good Samaritan law and other H.O.P.E. laws
• Partner with other organizations to provide pre-treatment programing and post-treatment 
• Develop scholarships for treatment programs and transition living
• Advocate for changes in the laws related to prevention, treatment, harm reduction and law enforcement (including treatment within our incarceration facilities)

Don't think you are impacted by addiction? Even without a friend or family member, there is a significant impact to our society. Here are some facts from drugwarfacts.org. Note that many of these costs have risen significantly since the reports published:

· In 2009, the estimated cost of Controlled prescription drug abuse to public and private medical insurers was $72.5 billion a year.

· In 2007, the cost of illicit drug use totaled more than $193 billion. Direct and indirect costs attributable to illicit drug use are estimated in three principal areas: crime, health, and productivity.

· Between 1981 and 2008, federal, state, and local governments are estimated to have spent at least $600 billion (adjusted for inflation) on drug interdiction and related law enforcement efforts; factoring in costs associated with treatment and rehabilitation, the overall total rises to around $800 billion.34 If one were to also add in 'invisible' losses brought about by curtailed job opportunities and reduced workplace productivity, the true cost would be far higher."

· State correctional spending patterns reflect the rise in the prison population that began in the early 1980's and persisted until 2010. Expansion of the state prison population required increased spending for capital infrastructure, the state employee workforce, and the administrative needs of the judicial system. From fiscal 1986 to fiscal 2012, spending from state funds18 for corrections increased by 427 percent from $9.9 billion to $52.4 billion (without adjusting for inflation). 88% of those who are incarcerated are there for drug related or drug induced crimes.​
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Lori Cross Schotten 
Menasha, WI
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