In response to New York State’s accelerating overdose epidemic, the Ithaca Plan is holding a public educational event about overdose and calling for life-saving approaches that prioritize public health. The event will also focus on remembering those who have lost their lives to overdose. Additionally, attendees will be trained in the use of and given their own Narcan kits. Narcan, also known as naloxone, is an overdose reversal drug that is available over the counter.
The community forum is part of coordinated public education events that will take place around the world for International Overdose Awareness Day on August 31. The Ithaca Community Forum will take place from 4:30-6:30 pm on August 31st, 2017, at The Space @ GreenStar on 700 W. Buffalo Street. It will include an educational presentation, two panels, remembrance, and Narcan training. Featured speakers will include Judge John C. Rowley, Family and County Court in Tompkins County; Gwen Wilkinson, Interim Drug Policy Coordinator, City of Ithaca, and former District Attorney of Tompkins County; Katharine Celentano, Policy Coordinator, Drug Policy Alliance; Brian Briggs, Senior Peer at the Southern Tier AIDS Program; Phoebe Brown, Assistant Coordinator at the Ultimate Reentry Opportunity at the Multicultural Resource Center; Fabina Colon, Director of the Multicultural Resource Center; Veronica Dedrick, Social Worker at Cayuga Medical Center; Will Fox, paramedic at Bangs Ambulance; Dr. William Klepak, Medical Director of Tompkins County Health Department; Dr. Heather MacAdam, Cayuga Addictions Recovery Services; Michele McElroy, Deputy Executive Director of the Southern Tier AIDS Program; Angela Sullivan, Executive Director of the Alcohol and Drug Council of Tompkins County; Justine Waldman, contracted service provider at the Southern Tier AIDS Program and emergency room physician; and Lieutenant Jacob Young, Ithaca Police Department.