NYC Police Department Now Focused on OD; Michigan OD Stats Up

Updated 1 year ago Edited by Tony Rutherford from Multiple Reports
NYC Police Department Now Focused on OD; Michigan OD Stats Up

A recent New York Post article revealed that law enforcement in the nation's largest city were "caught by surprise" with the massive overdose epidemic. Prior to 2014, 700 to 800 fatal overdoses per year was a norm. In 2015 the deaths spiked to 937 then to 1,300 in 2016. 

This exceeds the number of homicides and traffic deaths combined. 335 people died from homicides citywide in 2016, while the number of traffic fatalities was 220.

Police Commissioner James O'Neil called the epidemic a national crisis, adding, “This problem is changing the way the men and women of this department have to do their jobs,” O'Neil said.  Around 17,000 of his cops are now trained to use naloxone — a nasal spray that reverses the effects of a drug overdose.

He echoed the now familiar, 'we can't arrest ourselves out of the problem,' explaining in the Post article that  "when our investigators interview someone lucky enough not to die from an overdose, we tell them we’re not going to lock them up. We want to know and where they got their drugs. We want to move further up the food chain until we cut off the supply."

MEANWHILE, Michigan has reported a 13.5% increase in deaths from 2014 to 2015. 1,981 people perished in 2015, quadruple the 455 that died in 1999. 

According to the Detroit Free Press, In 2015, prescription opioids — drugs like oxycodone (OxyContin), hydrocodone (Vicodin), methadone and fentanyl —  were involved in 45% of the drug poisoning deaths in Michigan. About 20% of deaths involved heroin, an illegally made opioid, without the presence of prescription opioids.





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