A major controversy has emerged in Ohio over one sheriff's surprising comments, which has many in the community upset.
An Ohio sheriff is in some hot water after making an insane proposal that has a lot of people angry, but he’s not backing down at all. With the nation in the grips of an opioid epidemic, Richard Jones, the sheriff of Butler County in Ohio, said his deputies will never save the life-saving drug Narcan that reverses the effects of overdoses.
It’s an effective drug that is commonly carried by police officers across the country, but not Butler’s. “We don’t do the shots for bee stings, we don’t inject diabetic people with insulin. When does it stop?” he told The Washington Post.
He defended himself from people angrily calling him heartless, saying that he was not the one who decides if people die, but rather it’s the decision of those who “stick that needle in their arm.” He said this has been his stance since being elected in 2004. Instead, Butler wants to see better prevention efforts.
A similar controversy erupted in Ohio when a councilman in Middletown suggested letting people who had overdosed on opioids just die. Middletown City Manager Douglas Adkins responded to the controversy with a statement.
“It’s been an interesting week here in Middletown. Let’s start with the facts,” Adkins wrote. “Councilman Picard asked the Law Dept to investigate whether we had a legal obligation to dispatch to repeat opiate overdose patients. If, after investigation, there was a legal and ethical path that would allow us to legally choose to respond or not to dispatch, he opined that there could be a system to be later considered that would divert overdosing addicts from jail and into community service and treatment. …
“We are usually heavily criticized not for being too harsh, but rather for being too lenient with addicts. No one has figured this problem out. Cities, States and the country as a whole all struggle to handle the epidemic. It’s a national problem and we utilize the local resources we have to deal with the problem in our City. One last time – we have not considered or adopted any change to our method of responding to opiate overdose calls. We respond and render aid every time.”