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Sunday, May 24, 2020

OPP Concerned About Opioid Deaths In The Region

Regional | by Claire McCormack  

Police say in the first five months of 2020, there have been 52 suspected opioid overdoses.

OPP in our West Region are concerned about recent opioid related deaths and they want to remind the community how deadly opioids can be.

Police say, between May 1st and 17th, they responded to 12 suspected opioid overdose incidents, including three fatalities in the area that covers Windsor to Tobermory, to Collingwood and down to the southern edge of Mount Forest.

They note, in the first five months of 2020, there have been 52 suspected opioid overdoses, including 13 deaths in West Region.

In 2019, there were 37 confirmed or suspected fatal opioid overdoses in communities served by OPP West Region.

In all, OPP West Region members responded to 234 confirmed or suspected overdoses in 2019.

Police say these overdoses highlight the fact that the misuse and abuse of controlled substances is dangerous and can be deadly.

OPP say Fentanyl  is a powerful synthetic opioid pain reliever that is similar to morphine and is estimated to be 50 - 100 times stronger.

Carfentanil  is a toxic synthetic opioid that is not intended for human consumption. Police say both of these opioids sometimes get mixed into street drugs which can cause serious health issues including death, even in small quantities.

They recommend those looking for local supports may contact their health care provider, local Health Unit, The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Addiction & Mental Health Ontario, the Canadian Mental Health Association, Health Canada or Government of Ontario websites.

They're also reminding people about Canada's Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act, which provides protection from charges for individuals at the scene of a drug overdose for simple drug possession.

OPP are encouraging people with information that can lead to the arrests of traffickers to call them OPP at 1-888-310-1122 or your local police. To remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or visit 222tips.ca.

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