London police to carry naloxone kits in the new year

A naloxone anti-overdose kit is shown in Vancouver, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017.
A naloxone anti-overdose kit is shown in Vancouver, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. Jonathan Hayward/The Canadian Press

If all goes to plan, London police officers will have naloxone kits with them as they patrol beginning in the new year.

Last week the province announced it would bankroll the rollout of the opioid overdose antidote to police and fire services across Ontario.

London’s police department was already in the process of purchasing kits for front-line officers while policies and best practices are still being developed.

READ MORE: Police in Woodstock to carry naloxone

Deputy Chief Daryl Longworth told 980 CFPL they welcomed last week’s announcement.

“It’s something we had been asking for for a long time was for the government to make some funding available to allow police services to pay for it without burdening their existing budget.”

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Longworth says officers will need the necessary training before they can be introduced.

“We want to make sure the procedures we put in place are comprehensive enough to look after every single possibility and we want to make sure there’s sufficient training.”

READ MORE: 3 Londoners charged in drug bust that nets more than $20K in fentanyl: police

Longworth says with EMS response in the city being fairly rapid, officers rely on paramedics in those situations but they’d like their officers to be equipped as well.

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