h1>Advocacy Alert: March 2020 Legislative News Round Up

April 1, 2020


For those of you who follow us on social media know, we post news stories on a daily basis that are connected to the behavioral health and addiction treatment industry.

Many of these are news stories regarding legislation, so once a month we send out a ‘news roundup’ of related news stories we’ve posted. Unless otherwise stated, BHAP has no official stance on any of these stories: the intention is to share so that we’re all better informed as to what’s happening in the legislative world.

A reminder that BHAP members get access to a monthly call with our advocate in Washington, DC, to find out what is going on and ask any questions you may have. Feel free to contact us for more information on that.

MS | Mississippi Considers Limit on Drug Called Kratom
Shared 3/2/2020
Mississippi legislators are debating whether to either regulate or ban kratom, an herbal drug that can be used for pain relief and that is currently unregulated in most parts of the United States.

AK | Alaska Officials Propose Legislation Addressing Gaps in Psychiatric Response System
Shared 3/4/2020
On behalf of Governor Mike Dunleavy and in response to a 2019 Superior Court ruling, the Departments of Health and Social Services and Law proposed legislation to address gaps in the state’s psychiatric response system.

Senators Reintroduce Privacy Law for Substance Use Disorder Treatment
Shared 3/5/2020
The bipartisan senate proposal, Protecting Jessica Grubb’s Legacy Act, would modernize 42 CFR Part 2 privacy regulation to support substance use disorder treatment and improve care coordination.

CT | No ‘Silver Solution’ to Mental Health Parity in Connecticut
Shared 3/5/2020
Advocates say passage of 2019’s Mental Health Parity bill represented great progress in the battle for increased mental health access and insurance coverage for those afflicted throughout Connecticut, but it’s not enough.

OR | Oregon Activists Collect Enough Signatures For Drug Decriminalization And Treatment Measure
Shared 3/8/2020
Activists in Oregon have collected more than the required raw number of signatures to qualify a historic initiative to decriminalize drug possession and increase access to treatment for the state’s November ballot.

Bipartisan Support for Extension of Mental Health Care Funding
Shared 3/12/2020
Senators on Wednesday stood alongside mental health professionals from Indiana, Iowa and Texas to call on Congress to extend funding they say is critical to providing mental health treatment.

HI | Hawai’i Senate Approves Drug Defelonization Bill
Shared 3/12/2020
The Hawai’i Senate passed a bill that would remove the threat of being charged with a felony for low-level drug possession offenses.

More Addiction Treatment Docs Needed for Opioid Crisis, House Panel Told
Shared 3/14/2020
The opioid crisis and growing addiction to methamphetamine and other stimulants won’t be abated until the country trains more addiction medicine physicians, witnesses said at a House Energy & Commerce Health Subcommittee hearing.

UT | State Poised for ‘Monumental’ Shift in the Handling of Mentally Ill, Lawmakers Say
Shared 3/16/2020
Lawmakers and mental health advocates say Utah’s mental health system will be transformed in a “monumental” and “historic” way thanks to more than $23 million in funding approved by the Legislature.

VA | Legislature Approves Mental Health Training for Virginia Teachers
Shared 3/18/2020
The General Assembly passed a bill that will require full-time teachers to complete mental health awareness training, though some advocates are split on how the training should be implemented.

Good News: The Federal Government Just Made It a Whole Lot Easier to Access Opioid Addiction Treatment
Shared 3/19/2020
For the hundreds of thousands of Americans who have to visit clinics for daily doses of opioid addiction medication, social distancing is nearly impossible. But on Tuesday, the federal government eased some of its long-held restrictions in response to the coronavirus.

AZ | New Law Aims to Improve Mental Health Options for Youth
Shared 3/26/2020
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey recently signed into law a bill called “Jake’s Law” to address the need for better mental health services for teens in Arizona in an effort to curb the tragedy of suicide in that age group.

Questions? Concerns?

As always, we want your input.

A reminder that BHAP members get regular access to our advocate in Washington, DC. If you have any questions about BHAP’s advocacy efforts, please contact us.



A national membership association that provides education and advocacy for those in the behavioral health and addiction treatment industries.

We are the leading and unifying voice of addiction-focused treatment programs.

Join Now

Contact Us

Monday - Friday
8:30 am - 4:30 pm Pacific
(closed major holidays)

a photo of a microphone at a conference. Text reads, 'Check out our Calendar of Industry Events'