By Carol McCracken (Post # 2,533)
Narcan, a drug that blocks the effects of opiods will now be carried by all regularly assigned patrol officers according to a press release issued this morning by the city’s spokesperson. Every officer has been trained in the property administration of the drug. Narcon will be supplied free of charge by the Attorney’s General office.
Since the beginning of this year, the Portland Police Department has been working on a 3-pronged strategy to fight addiction by increasing educational efforts, community awareness and facilitating treatment through the Law Enforcement Addiction Program (LEAAP). “Having our officers carry narcan is a logical component to the effort for those times in which we are the first to arrive on scene,” said Police Chief Michael Sauschuck in the press release today.
In December of 2015, the City and the Police Department announced the creation of the LEAAP program and in January of 2016 the city hired Oliver G. Badeen as the Substance Use Disorder Liason to run the program. The position is funded using forfeiture money seized from drug dealers. Badeen is located at the Police Station and works closely with officers and detectives in the streets and in the neighborhoods. He engages known users who have been identified by officers, community policing coordinators, drug intelligence and even family members – and then provides support and offers treatment options.