Commission on Combating Synthetic Opioid Trafficking

The Commission on Combating Synthetic Opioid Trafficking, established under Section 7221 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020, was charged with examining aspects of the synthetic opioid threat to the United States—specifically, with developing a consensus on a strategic approach to combating the illegal flow of synthetic opioids into the United States.

The Commission was composed of representatives of seven executive branch departments and agencies, four sitting members of both the Senate and the House of Representatives, and four subject-matter experts from the private sector chosen for their deep experience and expertise on this topic. The Commission co-chairs were Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR) and Congressman David Trone (D-MD-06), who were elected as co-chairs by the fifteen Commission members at its first meeting and jointly agreed upon by the Majority and Minority leaders of the Senate, the Speaker of the House and the House Minority Leader, and the President.

The Commission was supported in its research, analysis, and report writing by the Homeland Security Operational Analysis Center (HSOAC), a federally funded research and development center operated by RAND on behalf of the Department of Homeland Security.

Digital Article

  • Synthetic Opioids Are an Everything Problem

    Illegally manufactured synthetic opioids have accelerated the opioid crisis. These drugs have created new challenges across a wide range of policy areas. That's why this crisis warrants new strategies and a comprehensive response.

Final Report from the Commission

Explore the Commission's recommended response to illegally manufactured synthetic opioids

July 2022 Event

Additional Publications