The long-running children’s education series Sesame Street will introduce a new character who addresses America’s ongoing opioid crisis, Fox News has reported.
The character is a green-and-yellow Muppet named Karli, living with foster parents who are suffering from an addiction to opioids. The Karli character will appear alongside a 10-year-old California girl named Salia Woodbury, whose parents actually suffered from the same addiction and have “been in recovery for eight years.”
The new character will address certain aspects of the crisis, including the sense of isolation among affected families who feel they are alone in their suffering, as well as how certain members of the family may feel responsible in some capacity for the victims’ addictions.
Senior content manager of the series Kama Einhorn said that the decision to address this issue was made because “there’s nothing else out there that addresses substance abuse for young, young kids from their perspective.” There are “5.7 million children under the age of 7” living in the United States with at least one parent who is dealing with substance abuse of some kind.