Today, August 31st, marks the Ninth International Overdose Awareness Day. This day, started in 2001 by the Australian branch of the Salvation Army, is intended to honor and remember those who have lost their lives to an overdose, as well as to educate policymakers and the public about the growing, global overdose crisis. The silver ribbon is a symbol which puts different views and presumptions aside to commemorate the complexity of life and to remember the joy given by those who have been lost.
In Washington State, overdoses from prescription opioids are on the rise. Drug overdoses kill over two Washingtonians a day.
On June 10, 2010, the Washington State "911 Good Samaritan" Law took effect. The law helps to prevent overdose deaths by providing immunity from charges of drug possession
to people who seek
medical assistance in drug overdose situations. Neither the caller nor
the overdose victim will be charged with possession if they seek help by calling
911. Learn more at http://StopOverdose.org.
For more information about International Overdose Awareness Day, which is being marked by the Salvation Army, Drug Policy Alliance, the European AIDS Treatment Group, and dozens of other national and international organizations, see:
Salvation Army (Australia): http://www.salvationarmy.org.au/SALV/LANDING/PC_60908.html
Drug Policy Alliance Press Release: http://www.drugpolicy.org/news/pressroom/pressrelease/pr082410.cfm
European AIDS Treatment Group press release: http://www.eatg.org/eatg/Press/Press-Releases/Overdose-Awareness-Day