Emer­gency Ser­vices to lead QA opi­oid ef­forts

Record Observer - - NEWS -

CENTREVILLE — The Queen Anne’s County Emer­gency Ser­vices will lead a co­or­di­nated ef­fort across Queen Anne’s County to fo­cus on preven­tion, treat­ment, ed­u­ca­tion, and en­force­ment mea­sures in or­der to ag­gres­sively com­bat the opi­oid and heroin cri­sis.

Emer­gency man­agers bring with them an in­valu­able skillset: the abil­ity to con­duct ef­fi­cient mul­ti­a­gency co­or­di­na­tion. Fight­ing the heroin and opi­oid cri­sis ne­ces­si­tates a whole community ap­proach sup­ported by a mul­ti­tude of agen­cies. The Queen Anne’s Depart­ment of Emer­gency Ser­vices Of­fice will en­sure a uni­fied ef­fort in Queen Anne’s County.

A num­ber of govern­ment agen­cies will be work­ing to­gether to re­duce the im­pact that heroin and opi­oids have on the community. This in­cludes Centreville Po­lice Depart­ment, Queen Anne’s County Board of Ed­u­ca­tion, Queen Anne’s County Sher­iff’s Of­fice, Queen Anne’s County State’s At­tor­ney’s Of­fice, Queen Anne’s Depart­ment of Emer­gency Ser­vices, Mar yland State Po­lice and Queen Anne’s County Depart­ment of Cor­rec­tions, Mary­land Trans­porta­tion Author­ity, Queen Anne’s County Health Depart­ment and Queen Anne’s County Drug Task Force.

This comes on the heels of Gov. Larry Ho­gan declar­ing a State of Emer­gency for the state. The gover­nor’s ex­ec­u­tive or­der del­e­gates emer­gency pow­ers to state and lo­cal emer­gency man­age­ment of­fi­cials, en­abling them to fast-track co­or­di­na­tion among state and lo­cal agen­cies with and community or­ga­ni­za­tions, in­clud­ing pri­vate sec­tor and non­profit en­ti­ties to en­sure wholecom­mu­nity in­volve­ment. The dec­la­ra­tion was a re­sult of the ini­tial find­ings of the Opi­oid Op­er­a­tional Com­mand Cen­ter es­tab­lished by the ad­min­is­tra­tion in Jan­uary to fa­cil­i­tate greater col­lab­o­ra­tion among state agen­cies, in­clud­ing health and hu­man ser­vices, ed­u­ca­tion, and pub­lic safety en­ti­ties. The OOCC’s work made it clear that the state needed greater flex­i­bil­ity to ac­ti­vate emer­gency teams in ju­ris­dic­tions across the state and en­gage lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties. Ad­di­tion­ally, Ho­gan is com­mit­ting $50 mil­lion in ad­di­tional fund­ing to di­rectly ad­dress this cri­sis.

Ad­di­tion­ally, the gover­nor an­nounced that he has tasked his se­nior ad­vi­sor for emer­gency man­age­ment Clay Stamp, to over­see the State’s co­or­di­nated pro­gram. Stamp will work closely with Queen Anne’s County in or­der to sup­port the lo­cal ef­fort.

“As an emer­gency man­age­ment pro­fes­sional, it gives me great honor to have been cho­sen to lead such an im­por­tant ef­fort, and to ser­vice next to the many ded­i­cated and highly ca­pa­ble people who are work­ing to elim­i­nate the im­pact this cri­sis is hav­ing on the people of Mary­land,” said Stamp.

PHOTO BY DALE PA­TRICK

At­tend­ing the Opi­oid Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mand Meet­ing on March 7, clock­wise from the left rear, 1st Sgt. Joseph Saboury of Mary­land State Po­lice-ESIC, Sher­iff Gary Hof­mann, Emer­gency Ser­vices Direc­tor Scott Haas, Health Of­fi­cer Dr. Joseph Ciotola, In­terim Su­per­in­ten­dent of Schoosl Greg Pilewski, Lt. Kenny Rhodes of the Centreville Po­lice Depart­ment and an uniden­ti­fied par­tic­i­pant. Not shown: De­ten­tion Cen­ter War­den La­mont Cooke and Deputy State’s At­tor­ney Michael Cuches.

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