The AtlantiCare Foundation contributed $10,000 towards Prosecutor Damon G. Tyner’s directive for every patrol officer to be equipped with the life-saving drug Naloxone. The funding will be used to cover the cost of replenishing the drug when it is depleted.
“We are grateful to AtlantiCare for their contribution to this very necessary initiative to save the lives of those who experience an opiate overdose. By working with AtlantiCare, our police officers will be equipped with this opiate antidote and have the ability to save lives in Atlantic County,” Prosecutor Tyner said.
“We are in the middle of a public health crisis as it pertains to opioid addiction and drug-related deaths. I have stated repeatedly that we cannot arrest our way out of this situation,” he said. “The important part now is trying to save some lives, and give people an opportunity to get the appropriate treatment.”
AtlantiCare said they look forward to working together to reduce the number of lives lost in Atlantic County due to opioids.
There are 20 municipal and county law enforcement agencies in Atlantic County and ACPO Chief of Detectives Daren Dooley said within the next month there will be enough Naloxone to equip every officer on the street. The initial supply of naloxone will be paid for with forfeiture funding, Chief Dooley said.
Police officers in Atlantic City, Pleasantville, Ventnor, Galloway Township, Linwood, Hammonton, and Stockton University are already carrying naloxone. Pleasantville Police Department pays for the drug with their forfeiture funds.
Prosecutor Tyner said he wants the number of naloxone administrations to decrease across the county and the directive for county police departments to be equipped with the antidote is to make sure every municipality is prepared.
“Partnerships like this one are vital to complete the mission of saving lives. This is an epidemic afflicting every community, and it does not discriminate. We cannot sit by idly and watch as lives and families are destroyed,” Prosecutor Tyner said.
Recognizing that no life is disposable, Governor Chris Christie has acted with a strong commitment to change the conversation in how we treat drug abuse and drug addiction in New Jersey and working past the stigma associated with this disease. In doing so, New Jersey is leading the nation by advancing forward with a focus on treatment first to save lives, restoring hope and giving people the second chance they deserve.