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N.Y. Attorney General speaks with families impacted by opioid crisis

A.G. James:"It's a crisis that we have got to address"
Posted at 12:09 AM, Apr 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-26 00:10:18-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — New York State Attorney General Letitia James paid a visit Thursday evening to local advocacy group Save the Michaels of the World, Inc. to meet and listen to Western New York families impacted by the opioid crisis, as well as city leaders.

"It's a crisis that we have got to address," A.G. James said. She continued, "Individuals who are responsible for this crisis must be held accountable."

Save the Michaels began in 2011 to raise awareness about the dangers of opioids. The founders--Avi and Julie Israel--lost their son, Michael, to suicide due to opioid complications.

Clutching a framed photograph of Avi and Michael, James discussed the recent lawsuit she filed against multiple prescription opioid manufacturers, distributors and the Sackler family.

If there is a settlement, the A.G. said the money will go towards treatment, education and prevention. James also pledged if and when there is a settlement, she plans on announcing it here in Buffalo.

The Israel family, among others in attendance, honored James came to hear their stories.

"Michael never got to finish his book. He had one bad chapter and that was the end of the book, so really I think Michael is finishing his book," Avi Israel said. The Israels added they are looking to add a sober home in the near future.