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Blumenthal pushes for federal law against illegal drug sales on social media

Blumethal Illegal Drug Legislation.jpg
Michael Lyle, Jr.
U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal speaks outside the Connecticut State Capitol about legislation he's proposing to stop the sale of illegal drugs on social media.

U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) is urging federal action against the spread of illegal drug purchases through social media apps.

Connecticut health officials found that teens and young adults have used social media platforms, such as Snapchat, Instagram and TikTok, to buy illegal drugs, like fentanyl. Financial apps, such as CashApp, are also allegedly used to make those purchases.

Craig Allen, vice president of addiction services for Hartford Healthcare, said it’s scary for adults and teens to have easy access to those illegal drugs without any restrictions.

“When we see that and we have an opportunity to turn off that spigot, I think it is our obligation as the grown-ups here in the community and in society to do our part and try to protect our youth,” Allen said.

Blumenthal added that he’s pushing for bipartisan legislation to stop easy access to those drugs.

“The internet has become a smorgasbord of illicit drugs,” Blumenthal said. “It needs to be taken away and it has to stop. One pill can kill. That’s the lesson.”

Health officials have linked a growing number of overdose deaths in the state to counterfeit fentanyl-laced pills sold online.

Mike Lyle is a former reporter and host at WSHU.