Tuesday is International Overdose Awareness Day.

To mark the occasion, the Oneida County Opioid Task Force is launching a new website to provide information and resources for its members and the community.

The website can be accessed at ocopioidtaskforce.org.

County Executive Anthony Picente says the county is also establishing Rapid Response Street Engagement Teams.

He says the teams will do boots-on-the-ground outreach and engagement in areas where data and community members have identified as “hot spots” with issues of mental health, substance use, homelessness and/or unmet social service needs.

Picente says outreach teams will be deployed to Oneida Square in Utica and in Camden to start.

“Today we remember those lives lost too soon because of drug overdoses in our community and acknowledge the profound grief experienced by the family and friends they’ve left behind,” said Picente, who serves as co-chair of the Opioid Task Force. “It is especially tragic when we know that those deaths could have been prevented. Thankfully, the partnerships we have formed through our Opioid Task Force, and the commitment we have made to preventing further loss, is making a difference every single day.”

The county has also purchased 100 Narcan Emergency Cabinets to distribute to various entities and local businesses.

The cabinets, which are very similar to publicly-sited Automated External Defibrillator (AED) machines, are secure metal units.

The cabinets each contain two doses of Narcan nasal spray along with instructions for its use.

Oneida County Executive's Office
Oneida County Executive's Office

Formed in 2016, the Oneida County Opioid Task Force is a large cross-sector partnership of community partners that meets quarterly and is specifically focused on addressing the opioid epidemic and other drug issues in the county.

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