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Settlement with Sacklers: Families impacted by opioid crisis losses weigh in

Signs in the shape of grave headstones with information on people who died from using OxyContin line a security fence outside the Supreme Court. (Stephanie Scarbrough/AP)
Signs in the shape of grave headstones with information on people who died from using OxyContin line a security fence outside the Supreme Court. (Stephanie Scarbrough/AP)

The Supreme Court is deliberating over whether to greenlight a controversial agreement that would force the Sackler family to pay 6 billion dollars to communities, hospitals, and families harmed by the opioid epidemic. The agreement would protect members of the Sackler family, its heirs and many associated with them from future opioid-related civil litigation.

The Sacklers owned and operated Purdue Pharma, which manufactured the powerful narcotic Oxycontin. The payout to families would be about $750 million, and there’s a divide between those who want the settlement upheld — releasing that money to the affected — and those who object to giving the Sackler’s immunity and maintain

payments to individual families (between 3,500 and 48,000 dollars) are woefully inadequate.

Host Robin Young talks to Massachusetts mother Cheryl Juaire, who lost two sons to overdose, and Pennsylvania’s Cynthia Munger, whose son is recovering from substance abuse disorder. Her nephew died of an overdose.

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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