Committee Makes Public Additional Documents Obtained in Investigation of Purdue Pharma and the Sackler Family
Washington, D.C. (Apr. 30, 2021)—Today, Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, the Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, and senior Committee Member Rep. Mark DeSaulnier issued the following statement after the Committee made public additional documents obtained as part of its investigation into the role Purdue Pharma and members of the Sackler family played in fueling the opioid epidemic:
“The documents released today mark another important step towards accountability for an epidemic that has claimed the lives of more than half a million people in the United States. The public deserves transparency into how Purdue Pharma and the Sackler family flooded America’s communities with OxyContin while misleading patients and families about the dangers it posed. Congress must pass our SACKLER Act to finally prevent members of the Sackler family from evading responsibility and to provide some degree of justice to the countless individuals harmed by their actions.”
Documents the Committee made public today contain communications between Purdue executives and members of the Sackler family, and internal presentations and analyses regarding the marketing and promotion of prescription opioids—including memos prepared by outside consulting firms and materials prepared for the company’s Board of Directors, which included members of the Sackler family.
In December 2020, members of the Sackler family testified before the Committee that they support the goal of additional transparency on behalf of the American people. During the hearing, David Sackler, who previously served on Purdue’s Board of Directors, testified: “I have no problem with transparency with everything that is relevant to Purdue as it relates to the Sacklers—none at all.” He also argued that “the full record, which has not been publicly released yet, will show that the Family and the Board acted legally and ethically.”
On March 11, 2021, the Committee made public selected documents obtained during the course of its investigation into Purdue and members of the Sackler family.
On March 19, 2021, Chairwoman Maloney and Congressman DeSaulnier introduced the SACKLER Act, which would ensure that individuals accused of wrongdoing by government actors are held accountable for their crimes and prevented from evading responsibility through bankruptcy proceedings. To date, the SACKLER Act has been cosponsored by more than thirty Members of Congress, endorsed by dozens of patient, treatment, and advocacy organizations, and received the support of Republican and Democratic State Attorneys General.
On April 20, 2021, Chairwoman Maloney released documents showing that members of the Sackler family are collectively worth a total of $11 billion.