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Saanich council receiving lifesaving training on Overdose Awareness Day

Public training more critical given opioid overdose epidemic, mayor says
Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes advocates for Opioid Awareness Day along with fellow Saanich council members, who will all receive Naloxone training online on Aug. 31. (Megan Atkins-Baker/News Staff)

Overdoses can occur in unexpected situations and for that reason, Saanich council members are receiving training in the use of Naloxone on Aug. 31, International Overdose Awareness Day.

Mayor Fred Haynes said it is very important to him, his family and fellow councillors that they know what to do in a situation requiring the administration of the lifesaving drug.

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Haynes ensured his three sons had Naloxone training as teenagers and young adults. Learning the signs of an overdose is one of the many ways the public can help address the province’s ongoing opioid crisis, he added. Getting a Naloxone kit and learning how to use it is part of that effort, he said.

“Families are devastated by this toxic drug supply and the answer is a free and safe source, and to address this as a medical issue – not a criminal issue,” said Haynes.

According to the B.C. Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions, Naloxone reverses an overdose from opioids such as morphine, heroin, oxycodone and fentanyl.

Naloxone can’t stop an overdose from drugs like cocaine, meth, crack and ecstasy, however, these drugs can be cut with lethal amounts of fentanyl so Naloxone is safe to administer when in doubt.

The motion for council to receive the training was unanimously supported earlier this year as part of a suite of resolutions to address Canada’s opioid crisis.

If you suspect an overdose call 911 immediately, and for more information visit Overdose Prevention and Response in B.C.

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