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Assembly Candidate Diane Dwire Unveils Three-Point plan to Confront the Heroin and Opioid Epidemic

John Smith

If she’s elected to the New York State Assembly, Democrat Diane Dwire says she will focus on confronting the heroin and opioid epidemic sweeping the country.  She notes how the problem of addiction is clear in the four counties covered by the 126th district, and across the nation as well.

They’re already caught in this prison of addiction and I really like that because I think that’s a good symbol,” She says.  “It’s a prison of addiction and we need to help them to get on the path of recovery.”  

Dwire’s three-point plan begins with stopping addiction before it starts with youth prevention programs, and training in pain management for doctors. That would be followed by increased funding for programs that fight addiction symptoms.  Finally, Dwire would end the addiction cycle all together by asking insurance companies to cover at least three months of treatment for recovering addicts. Dwire says her professional background exposed her to the dangers of addiction, which is why she is fighting to combat it now.

Credit John Smith / WAER News
Church adjacent to Memorial Park in Auburn.

“To being an assembly as a nurse I am knowledgeable and I’ve had experience with addiction,” Dwire says. “For the heroin opioid addiction and epidemic that we have I will fight for more, for better initiative and training for doctors,  and other health care professionals to limit the prescription of opioids.

Dwire is once again seeking to unseat Republican incumbent Gary Finch after a tight race in 2014.  Much like Dwire, he has advocated for rehabilitation and detox centers in order to help recovering addicts. Finch has said there should be more money in the state budget to combat the heroin epidemic, and Dwire seems to agree.

Assemblyman Gary Finch stated there should be a bigger budget to combat addiction.

She says, “I will fight for funding, for prevention, for treatment and that is one of the things that is the hardest to do.    

Mortality rates from drug overdoses in Central New York outpaced the state average from 2012 to 2014. In Onondaga County, the rate is 15 percent.  The state average is 11 percent.  Residents in the Assembly’s 126th district will go to the polls on November 8th.  

Scott Willis covers politics, local government, transportation, and arts and culture for WAER. He came to Syracuse from Detroit in 2001, where he began his career in radio as an intern and freelance reporter. Scott is honored and privileged to bring the day’s news and in-depth feature reporting to WAER’s dedicated and generous listeners. You can find him on twitter @swillisWAER and email him at