Members of a heroin task force in the Illinois House of Representatives are brainstorming for ideas to stop the increase of heroin use in Illinois.  State Rep. Lou Lang (D-Skokie) leads the task force, which is made up of 36 other lawmakers from the Illinois House.  He concedes addressing Illinois’ heroin problem is a tall task.
 
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“The system of relying on law enforcement and criminal penalties isn’t working,” said Lang. “  The cost of illegally obtained prescription pain killers like Vicodin and Oxycontin are pushing people to heroin because it’s cheaper.”  Lang says the epidemic is statewide, citing 46 heroin-related deaths in DuPage County in 2013 and three suspected heroin-related deaths in Madison County in a five-hour stretch last month.
 
The panel will meet throughout the spring legislative session.
 
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