Police services teaming up to educate public on dangers of fentanyl

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Area police services have joined forces with the local school boards to help warn against the dangers of fentanyl.

The Amherstburg Police Service is one of the area police departments involved, though Sgt. Matt Capel-Cure credited the Windsor Police Service for spearheading the initiative.

“We support what they are doing,” said Capel-Cure.

Capel-Cure said it is an information program with a pamphlet being developed that people can access online or by request at the police station or through local schools.

“It’s mainly an information pamphlet,” said Capel-Cure.

Sgt. Matt Capel-Cure of the Amherstburg Police Service is third from the right in this recent photo. Local police services and school boards have banded together to warn against the dangers of fentanyl. (Special to the RTT)

Sgt. Matt Capel-Cure of the Amherstburg Police Service is third from the right in this recent photo. Local police services and school boards have banded together to warn against the dangers of fentanyl. (Special to the RTT)

“All four school boards agreed to it and are on board with it,” added Const. Kim Rathbone. Rathbone is Amherstburg police’s mental health officer and also assists with addiction issues.

Capel-Cure said the pamphlet gives out warning signs and symptoms in case some is taking fentanyl, with those including severe sleepiness, slow heartbeat, trouble breathing, slow, shallow breathing or snoring, cold and clammy skin and trouble walking or talking.

Fentanyl may be in pill, powder or liquid form and can be cut into other drugs like cocaine, heroin, ecstasy and oxycodone. Capel-Cure said miniscule amounts of fentanyl can prove fatal.

“It is such a small amount that can kill you,” he said.

“With this, it’s truly a race against time to get help,” added Rathbone.

Rathbone said it has been stressed there is no fentanyl or opioid problems within the local school boards.

“They want to get ahead of the game,” she said.

“There have not been any issues at all in any of the school boards yet but it has been deemed to be a crisis in Canada in general,” added Capel-Cure.

Fentanyl has been linked to two deaths in Amherstburg in recent years, Capel-Cure stating, with the deaths taking place roughly one year apart.

“We’ve seen it,” said Rathbone.

In 2015, there were 529 opioid related deaths in Ontario with 162 related to fentanyl.

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