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Tacoma considers suing opioid makers in homelessness fight

A forensic chemist prepares a sample of the drug “gray death” to be weighed at the crime lab of the Georgia Bureau of Investigations in Decatur, Ga., on Thursday, May 4, 2017. The new and dangerous opioid combo underscores the ever-changing nature of the U.S. addictions epidemic. (Mike Stewart / Associated Press)
A forensic chemist prepares a sample of the drug “gray death” to be weighed at the crime lab of the Georgia Bureau of Investigations in Decatur, Ga., on Thursday, May 4, 2017. The new and dangerous opioid combo underscores the ever-changing nature of the U.S. addictions epidemic. (Mike Stewart / Associated Press)
Associated Press

TACOMA – The city of Tacoma is considering suing the manufacturers of opioids such as OxyContin in its fight against homelessness.

Mayor Marilyn Strickland said at Tuesday’s City Council meeting that the city is looking at possible litigation to hold opioid makers accountable for their decisions and actions.

In January, Everett sued Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, seeking to hold it accountable for social and economic damages to the community due to illegal trafficking of the powerful painkillers. The company has asked a federal judge in Seattle to throw out the lawsuit.

The News Tribune reports (http://bit.ly/2r0uy6P) that the council also declared a public health emergency in its fight against homelessness. That allows the city to waive certain regulations as it creates or find sites for temporary housing.

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