New Haven is seeing a spike in overdose deaths, city officials say
NEW HAVEN, CT (WFSB) – The city of New Haven is seeing a spike in deadly overdoses, officials said Tuesday.
City officials said there have been 12 overdose deaths reported in the city since January 25.
The average of fatal overdoses is usually two per week, according to the city.
“The overdoses have occurred throughout the City with three (3) incidents reported in Newhallville and four (4) in the Hill neighborhood,” city officials said. “Preliminary reports indicate that this cluster of cases is unique with the involvement of crack cocaine, crack pipes, and burned materials indicative of crack/cocaine use, but with a suspected mixture of opioids such as fentanyl.”
According to New Haven’s director of Public Health Maritza Bond, over 90% of the overdoses are fentanyl related.
City officials said they are trying to raise awareness to help prevent further overdoses and deaths. Fentanyl-laced crack cocaine is most concerning to officials because it is wide spread and is easily accessible to college and high school kids.
Anyone who would like to get treatment can call 1-800-563-4086 or can visit connectgnh.org for information.
Shonda Brooks from Bristol says she knows all too well how drug overdoses can impact a family. She says she has lost a lot of loved ones due to fentanyl.
“People need to know my sister didn’t just pass away because she didn’t wake up. My niece didn’t just pass away because she didn’t wake up. And my cousin,” says Brooks.
The non-profit organization For Cameron based out of New Haven is working to combat overdoses head-on by educating the public to recognize overdose signs, and to end addiction stigma.
Joe Firine from For Cameron says he lost his son to a fentanyl overdose
“It was a pressed pill that he thought he was getting OxyContin. It was not,” says Firine. “Never use alone. Ever. Always have Naloxone, Narcan, with you. There’s a Good Samaritan law in Connecticut. It doesn’t matter, you could have drugs all over the table. If you call someone to come in, someone’s having an overdose, you call 911, you will never be penalized for that.”
City officials are working to find out what is causing this spike in overdoses.
“Residents who use drugs are also encouraged to get their substances or paraphernalia tested at the Yale-Community Health Care Van, located at 270 Congress Avenue, Monday-Friday, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. – no question asked,” the city said.
New Haven officials said residents can get substances or paraphernalia tested at the Yale-Community Health Care Van, at 270 Congress Avenue, Monday through Friday, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
“We are experiencing a sudden increase in fatal overdoses in the City of New Haven, and we want to alert residents and the community about these incidents and encourage residents to learn more about the resources that are available to them,” said New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker.
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