Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-New Hampshire) addresses the Congressional Addiction Forum, April 29, 2015.
“Substance abuse—and right now, heroin—is killing people. It’s a huge public health epidemic, and it’s an epidemic that none of us can afford to ignore. Having been the chief law enforcement officer of our state, I’ve heard from our police that we cannot arrest our way out of this.
“ I think I was as tough a prosecutor as anyone, but I also know that we have a revolving door. People go and commit crimes because they’re addicted. In prison, they often don’t have the treatment and they never deal with the underlying issues. Even if they’re kept clean [in jail], the underlying issues are still there. If you’re going to send someone out of prison without the structures there, without having gotten any treatment, without the opportunity for a job, then you can predict what’s going to happen agin, and it’s not good for society and it’s obviously not good for the individual’s ability to be productive in society. That’s why I’m proud to support the reauthorization of the Second Chance Act.”