Governor Abbott launches ‘One Pill Kills’ fentanyl awareness campaign.

AUSTIN (KXAN) — In an ongoing fight against fentanyl, Gov. Greg Abbott launched an awareness campaign called “One Pill Kills.” The governor held a roundtable discussion with state and local law enforcement on Monday, outlining the actions state officials have taken against the deadly drug so far.

Abbott also announced new laws to be considered in the upcoming legislative session that would classify fentanyl as poisoning, allow a person to be charged with murder if they distribute fentanyl or drugs laced with fentanyl that kill someone, and make Naloxone more readily available throughout the state.

Fentanyl has been in the headlines across the country this year as the number of overdose deaths from the drug continues to rise. Abbott called it the deadliest drug threat Texas — and the nation — has ever faced, saying it kills four Texans every day.

“Fentanyl is a secret killer,” Abbott told the roundtable before outlining some of the steps the state has taken to combat the crisis.

“I am proud to announce the launch of the state of Texas’ One Pill Kills comprehensive campaign to remind Texans that just one pill laced with fentanyl can take a life,” Abbott continued. “Together we will protect more innocent lives from this deadly drug.”

The fight against fentanyl in Texas

Last month, Governor Abbott asked state agencies to step up the state’s efforts to combat the fentanyl crisis. He directed them to outline legislative changes, budget priorities and other initiatives that his office believes will improve the state’s ability to intercept access to the synthetic opioid, provide emergency overdose treatment and expand substance abuse treatment programs.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is also involved in the fight against opioids. Earlier this month, he announced a pilot program called Friday Night Lights Against Opioids.

Paxton said they will give away more than 3.5 million home kits to high school football programs across the state between Oct. 27 and Dec. 17. The kits can be taken home and used to dispose of illegal or leftover prescription drugs.

In Austin, the NICE (Narcan in Case of Emergency) Project partnered with the Sunrise Homeless Navigation Center to install the city’s first Narcan vending machine in August. The drug is an emergency treatment that can quickly reverse an opioid overdose and is available 24/7 at the vending machine.

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