Ontario Police Association Calls on Windsor Police to Carry Naloxone

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The President of the Police Association of Ontario is calling on Windsor police to change its stance on naloxone.

Windsor is the only major city in Ontario where its police officers don't carry the life-saving drug that reverses the effects of an overdose.

Speaking on AM800's the Afternoon News, Association President Bruce Chapman says it is a health and safety issue for police officers.

Not only does it add an extra layer of protection for the officers themselves who may be accidentally exposed to drugs, but Chapman says it has been proven to save people's lives.

"Accidental exposure at any time when they are working and we all know there is an opioid crisis going on now, this is a way to protect  and possible save police's officers from harm," he says.

Chapman says it is a matter of life or death.

"It's proven. It has saved hundreds of lives where police have administered naloxone to save a member of the community who has suffered an overdose, whether it be through a drug overdose or through accidental exposure," he says.

Chapman says there is very little risk in administering naloxone.

"You can not do harm by administering if by chance they didn't suffer an overdose, this is a method that is able to save a life if someone has overdosed," he adds.

Back in October, Chief Pam Mizuno said she wasn't slamming the door on equipping officers with naloxone kits, but for now the status quo will remain in place.

Mizuno's predecessor, Al Frederick, was against equipping Windsor police officers saying EMS were best suited to handle the medical emergency.

The Police Association of Ontario is the official provincial body for 18,000 sworn and civilian police personnel from 47 police associations across Ontario.

Public Health Ontario reports there were 22 opioid-related deaths in this region in the first three months of 2019.