RI – On Friday, February 14, the Rhode Island State Police announced its plans
to carry naloxone in every cruiser, providing officers with a fast-acting
tool that quickly reverses the effects of an opiate overdose. This is a
drug that has a demonstrated ability to save lives, and today Brett Smiley
called on the Providence Police to follow the example of the State Police
and equip all officers with this tool.

Brett commented, «This is a matter of common sense. Police officers, by the
nature of their work, may confront life-or-death situations with victims of
drug overdose, and they should be armed with the right tools to provide the
necessary assistance. Overdose is a serious problem, and we need to address
it with the same attention and urgency with which we address violent crimes
and other deadly situations.»

He went on to say, «This is a solution that goes hand-in-hand with putting
more officers on our streets, making sure that officers are able to respond
to situations in a timely and effective manner. I applaud the State Police
for making naloxone available to all officers, and I urge the Providence
Police to follow their lead.»

Smiley also added, «I will be releasing a comprehensive drug policy in the
coming months, but current crisis demands action now and this is an
important step that can be taken immediately.»

Brett Smiley released a public safety plan for Providence in December that
included having more officers walking the beat and helping first-time,
nonviolent drug offenders with treatment rather than incarceration. The
full plan can be read here:

Brett Smiley is running in the September 2014 Democratic Primary for Mayor
of Providence.