The manufacturing industry in Ohio is expanding under the Trump administration, but growth is stunted because many potential employees are also addicted to drugs.
Steve Staub, who runs Staub Manufacturing Solutions in Ohio, attended the State of the Union address Tuesday as a special guest to President Donald Trump. While there, aside from participating in the pageantry, Staub discussed problems in the manufacturing industry and business in general with the president.
Staub mentioned to Trump the toll the opioid crisis has had on business’ ability to fill jobs. About two million Americans nationwide are addicted to the drug. The crisis has been particularly hard on Staub’s home state of Ohio, were thousands of job applicants are turned away because of substance abuse.
“In Ohio alone, they have about 20,000 available jobs in manufacturing. In Dayton, Ohio, where I’m from, we have about 4,000 jobs available today in manufacturing that we can’t fill,” Staub told TheDCNF.
“We can’t get people to pass a drug test.”
Other area’s on Staub’s list of concerns are taxes, regulations, health care, and infrastructure.
The Trump administration has made significant, direct strides in two of those areas. At the end of 2017, Trump signed into law the GOP tax plan and unleashed a torrent of investment in the form of raised wages and bonuses. The Trump administration has also reversed the expansion of the regulatory state, which increases the costs of doing business.
Republicans punted on health care, however, as they could not build the support needed to reform or repeal the Affordable Care Act, known widely as Obamacare.
The fate of Trump’s infrastructure plan remains to be seen. Trump championed a $1.5 trillion infrastructure investment plan during his address to Congress last week.
“Together, we can reclaim our building heritage,” Trump said. “We will build gleaming new roads, bridges, highways, railways, and waterways all across our land. And we will do it with American heart, American hands, and American grit.”
More than anything, Staub believes the Trump administration has had the greatest impact on the “overall optimism” of the manufacturing industry and business in general as companies adopt plans for growth and expansion. The National Association of Manufacturers, in their Manufacturers’ Outlook Survey taken every quarter for two decades, found optimism to be at an all-time high in the last quarter of 2017.
Along with the financial boost from the GOP tax plan, companies began implementing their strategies for growth almost immediately.
“We’ve gave a much larger Christmas bonus than we were going to when [tax reform] passed,” Staub told TheDCNF of his own company.
“We are giving raises to everybody, and we went ahead and expanded and bought the building next door to us that was for sale as part of our future growth.”
Still, it appears achieving the optimistic goals comes back to hiring the right people and that seems to be tough to find in America today.. not because of “wrong skills” but because everyone’s loaded… all the time.
1861-1865 – During the Civil War, medics use morphine as a battlefield anesthetic. Many soldiers become dependent on morphine after the war.
1898 – Heroin is first produced commercially by the Bayer Company. At the time, heroin is believed to be less habit-forming than morphine, so it is dispensed to individuals who are addicted to morphine.
1914 – Congress passes the Harrison Narcotics Act, which requires that doctors write prescriptions for narcotic drugs like opioids and cocaine. Importers, manufacturers and distributors of narcotics must register with the Treasury Department and pay taxes on product.
1924 – The Anti-Heroin Act bans the production and sale of heroin in the United States.
1970 – The Controlled Substances Act becomes law. It creates groupings (or schedules) of drugs based on the potential for abuse. Heroin is a Schedule I drug while morphine, fentanyl, oxycodone (Percocet, OxyContin) and methadone are Schedule II. Vicodin – a hydrocodone-acetaminophen combination – was originally a Schedule III medication but wasn’t recategorized as a Schedule II drug until October 2014.
January 10, 1980 – A letter titled “Addiction Rare in Patients Treated with Narcotics” is published in the New England Journal of Medicine. It was not a study and looked at incidences of addiction in a very specific population of hospitalized patients who were closely monitored. However, it would become widely cited as proof that narcotics were a safe treatment for chronic pain.
1995 – OxyContin, a long acting version of oxycodone, which slowly releases the drug over 12 hours, is introduced and aggressively marketed as a safer pain pill by manufacturer, Purdue Pharma.
May 10, 2007 – The federal government brings criminal charges against Purdue Pharma for misleadingly advertising OxyContin as safer and less addictive than other opioids. The company and three executives are charged with “misleading and defrauding physicians and consumers.”Purdue Pharma and the executives plead guilty, agreeing to pay a $634.5 million in criminal and civil fines. The three executives plead guilty on criminal misdemeanor charges and are later sentenced to probation.
2010 – FDA approves an “abuse-deterrant” formulation of OxyContin, to help curb abuse. However, people still find ways to abuse it.
May 20, 2015 – The DEA announces that it has arrested 280 people, including 22 doctors and pharmacists, after a 15-month sting operation centered on health care providers who dispense large amounts of opioids. The sting, dubbed Operation Pilluted, is the largest prescription drug bust in the history of the DEA.
March 18, 2016 – The CDC publishes guidelines for prescribing opioids for patients with chronic pain. Recommendations include prescribing over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen and ibuprofen in lieu of opioids. Doctors are encouraged to promote exercise and behavioral treatments to help patients cope with pain.
March 29, 2017 – President Donald Trump signs an executive order calling for the establishment of the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is selected as the chairman of the group, with Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, as an adviser.
July 31, 2017 – After a delay, the White House panel examining the nation’s opioid epidemic releases its interim report, asking President Trump to declare a national public health emergency to combat the ongoing crisis.
August 8, 2017 – Trump holds a press briefing on opioids at his New Jersey golf club and says that a stronger law enforcement response is needed to combat the crisis. He stops short of declaring a national public health emergency.
August 10, 2017 – The White House issues a press release stating that Trump is directing his “administration to use all appropriate authority to respond to the opioid emergency.” The administration does not, however, make a formal declaration of a national public health emergency, which would free up resources and funding to help opioid addicts and jumpstart prevention programs.
September 22, 2017 – The pharmacy chain CVS announces that it will implement new restrictions on filling prescriptions for opioids, dispensing a limited seven-day supply to patients who are new to pain therapy.
October 26, 2017 – President Trump declares a national public health emergency to combat the opioid crisis, telling an audience in the East Room of the White House that “we can be the generation that ends the opioid epidemic.”