Bill targets social media platforms and websites facilitating the illegal sale of drugs


Date: Jan. 7, 2022
Location: Washington, DC
Issues: Drugs

Today, U.S. Representatives Bobby L. Rush (D-Ill.) and David B. McKinley, P.E. (R-W.Va.) introduced the bipartisan Domain Reform for Unlawful Drug Sellers (DRUGS) Act, legislation to ensure that social media platforms and websites are held accountable for failing to prevent the sale of dangerous, illegal drugs on their platforms. Companion legislation has been introduced by U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) in the Senate.

"The prohibitively high cost of lifesaving prescription drugs leads many Americans to turn to the internet in search of alternatives, but a lack of regulation has enabled bad actors to market counterfeit and unsafe drugs on social media and rogue online pharmacies," said Rush. "We need to make sure that Americans are protected from exploitation from unlicensed sellers, who have helped fuel the opioid epidemic and addiction crisis and who continue to sell fraudulent and dangerous products to unsuspecting Americans. I am proud to join my colleague Rep. McKinley in introducing this needed and commonsense bipartisan legislation."

"West Virginia has the highest per capita opioid overdose death rate in the country, and we know first-hand the need for a comprehensive approach to stem the tide of this crisis. For too long internet companies have failed to live up to their commitment to combat the sale of dangerous illegal drugs, including pills laced with deadly fentanyl, on their platforms," said Rep. McKinley. "It's time to hold them accountable. It is far too easy to access drugs that are illegally sold on the internet, which has led to more lives being ruined by addiction and too many lives cut short by overdoses. We've heard enough of the excuses and empty promises by internet companies. The time has come for Congress to act."