The opioid crisis and COVID-19 pandemic are intersecting with each other and presenting new challenges for families, communities, and businesses.

Over 81,000 drug overdose deaths occurred in the United States in the 12 months ending in May 2020, the highest number of overdose deaths ever recorded in a 12-month period, according to the CDC.

In Michigan, preliminary data from 2020 suggest that COVID-19 has led to at least a 15 percent increase in opioid overdose deaths. 



  • Kara Beer, President, Battle Creek Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Representative Debbie Dingell, 12th District of Michigan
  • Jeff Horwitz, Chief Operating Officer, SAFE Project
  • Willie Kalousdian, Executive President, Families Against Narcotics
  • Shana Klesk, CFO, Verde Environmental Technologies/Deterra
  • William Nettleton, MD, Medical Director, Calhoun County Michigan Public Health Department