DRUG overdoses do not discriminate – it could be someone’s daughter, son, father, mother or best friend.
Because of this, St Patrick’s Community Centre in Fremantle took part in the recent International Overdose Awareness Day.
Crossroads Assertive AOD outreach worker Sean Gallacher said the day was a global event.
“It aims to raise awareness of overdose and reduce the stigma of a drug-related death,” he said.
“It also acknowledges the grief felt by families and friends remembering those who have died or had a permanent injury as a result of drug overdose.”
He said St Pat’s was providing free Naloxone training.
“It is what ambulance officers give someone if they have overdosed on an opioid – Naloxone only works on opioids, such as heroin, morphine, methadone, oxycodone and fentanyl,” he said.
“It has no side-effects on anyone who has not used opioids.
“The training will cover how to recognise and respond to opioid overdose and included in the training will be legally prescribed Naloxone kit.
“Anyone can attend the training, including family members, friends and other people who may witness opioid overdose.”
Mr Gallacher, who has worked in the alcohol and drug sector for five years, said overdose could affect anyone and was preventable.
“There is a lot of stigma around overdose and although homeless people are at risk of overdose, the largest increase in accidental overdose deaths are with people who take prescribed drugs,” he said.
“I’ve become increasingly aware of the dangers of opioid overdose and the increase in the number of fatal or life-changing overdoses.” FREMANTLE Sea Rescue sailed away with a win at the Fire and Emergency Services awards.
It won the Outstanding Group Operations award.
Fremantle Sea Rescue president Mark Zuvela said there was a sense of relief and accomplishment.
“Everyone in the team has been working incredibly hard,” he said.
“We have completed two major projects, including building two new custom boats, refitting another boat and converting a building to the rescue and operation centre.
“On a lot of these projects, whilst we got assistance we worked hard to fundraise ourselves.”
The rescue group uses state-of-the-art technology which enables it to monitor and transmit 11 marine radio channels from any smart phone, tablet or computer. Mr Zuvela said the centre received 33,000 calls a year and held between 600 and 700 rescues.
“All of our radio is controlled via computer and smartphones which gives us increased capabilities for 24-hour-a-day, 7-days-aweek radio watch,” he said.
“The technology has been around for a number of years but it didn’t have the multi-platform capabilities; we are the first people we know to use that particular software in the Southern Hemisphere.”