NEARLY A YEAR LATER, DEWINE ADOPTS PEPPER’S PROPOSALS TO IMPROVE HEROIN DATA ANALYSIS

COLUMBUS – Today, David Pepper’s campaign responded to Mike DeWine’s announcement that he was creating an Overdose Task Force to “address issues regarding the real-time reporting of drug overdose deaths in Ohio.” In November 2013, alarmed at how long it took DeWine to discover the heroin crisis in the first place, David Pepper called for the Attorney General’s Office to upgrade its ability to analyze overdose data in real-time to improve Ohio’s response to the heroin epidemic.

Peter Koltak, Pepper’s Communications Director, made the following statement:

“David Pepper proposed upgrading Ohio’s ability to analyze heroin overdose data nearly a year ago. While we’re happy DeWine finally noticed the problem, the fact that it took so long demonstrates that DeWine is simply overmatched by the heroin crisis. Ohio families continue to pay the price for DeWine’s lethargic response to the heroin epidemic.”

In April, Pepper released a comprehensive strategy for battling Ohio’s heroin epidemic that includes ideas for real-time data analysis.

SEE PEPPER’S FULL NOVEMBER 2013 STATEMENT BELOW:

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                               November 20, 2013 

PEPPER PROPOSES UPGRADE IN DATA COLLECTION TO FIGHT CRIME

Slow Response to Heroin Epidemic Shows Need for Modernization

CINCINNATI – David Pepper, the Democratic candidate for Ohio Attorney General, pledged to modernize the system of compiling and analyzing statewide crime and public safety data after it became clear this week that Mike DeWine’s office declared a heroin epidemic based on data from several years ago that wasn’t compiled until last month (and is still incomplete).*

“Mike DeWine declared a heroin epidemic two years after the epidemic actually began in our communities,” Pepper said. “If we are going to respond to crises as they are starting, rather than years too late, we must modernize our system of data collection, sharing and analyses.

“With the technology available in 2013, it’s simply inexcusable to make decisions on public safety crises based on outdated, after-the-fact and incomplete data gathering,” Pepper said. “We need real-time analysis to support real-time crime fighting and public safety.”

A key driver of public safety improvements across the country has been the analysis of real-time data to track crime trends as they occur, and deploy resources accordingly.  Comstat in New York City, and Citistat and Statestat, in Baltimore and Maryland, are two of the most high-profile examples of these successful systems.  As a City Councilmember and County Commissioner with a track record of fighting crime, Pepper has personally toured and observed some of these best practices in action.

“We will bring these best practices to Ohio, which will increase safety, improve our response, and provide needed support to local law enforcement efforts,” Pepper said.

*According to the AG’s release, “the decision to create the [new heroin] unit was made after new data gathered by the Attorney General’s Office in the past month revealed a 107 percent increase in heroin deaths among more than half of Ohio’s counties.”

But the “new” data covered 2010-2012, and doesn’t cover dozens of Ohio counties.

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