Statement for the Record Examining the Opioid Epidemic Challenges and Opportunities_Page_1On March 8, the First Focus State Policy and Advocacy Reform Center submitted a Statement for the Record in response to the hearing titled Examining the Opioid Epidemic: Challenges and Opportunities. Children are greatly affected by this growing epidemic and are entering the child welfare system at higher rates due to abuse and neglect related to substance abuse. The purpose of this statement is to draw the connections between the opioid crisis and challenges faced by state child welfare systems and offer recommendations on how to ensure better outcomes for families that struggle with substance abuse issues.