Clean Slate Milwaukee to Do Overdose Prevention Education at Juneteenth Celebration as Overdose Deaths Skyrocket in WI and Black Community
Free NARCAN® Training Held on June 25th at 11 am
June 19, 2022 (MILWAUKEE, WI) –More than 107,000 people died of an overdose in 2021, the most recorded in U.S. history. Wisconsin experienced a staggering 900% increase in opioid-involved overdose deaths from 1999 to 2020, with overdose deaths rising most rapidly in the Black community.
To combat the overdose crisis in the state, the grassroots criminal justice organization Clean Slate Milwaukee with support from public health organization, Vital Strategies, will be offering overdose prevention education and hosting a free-to-attend NARCAN® training.
On Sunday, at Milwaukee’s 51st annual Juneteenth Celebration, Clean Slate Milwaukee will be sharing information on opioids, overdose, and how to access NARCAN® and, importantly, harm reduction resources in Milwaukee. During the annual celebration, Clean Slate Milwaukee will promote an upcoming NARCAN® training, where community members will learn how to recognize signs of an overdose and how to administer NARCAN® to save a life. The NARCAN® training will be held at the City of Milwaukee Office of African American Affairs (4830 W. Fond du Lac Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53216), second floor conference room, on Saturday June 25 from 11-1:30pm.
“The media always speaks of overdose deaths in the white communities and suburbs, said Shanyeill McCloud, Executive Director at Clean Slate Milwaukee. “Therefore, the attention and resources also go there, and deprive the inner cities, in particular the black communities, of harm reducing resources.”
The training will be led by volunteers from Clean State Milwaukee in collaboration with the City of Milwaukee Office of African American Affairs, and NARCAN® will be distributed free of charge to community members in partnership with Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) NARCAN® Direct program. NARCAN® is a life-saving, easy-to-use medication that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose, including respiratory depression. DHS has supported NARCAN® Direct in Wisconsin since 2019 and currently partners with over 100 providers who distribute NARCAN® to communities throughout the state.
“We are grateful to Clean Slate Milwaukee and Vital Strategies for making this training possible. NARCAN® saves lives, and the more people who have it on hand and are trained to use it correctly, the more opportunities there are to save lives and prevent opioid overdose deaths.” said Paul Krupski, DHS Director of Opioid Initiatives. “It’s not just for people with opioid use disorder. Anyone can save a life using NARCAN®, so we encourage everyone to get trained and carry NARCAN® with them.”
New CDC numbers show more than 107,000 people died of an overdose in the US in 2021. Between 2016 and 2020, Black individuals experienced overdose deaths at a higher rate than other racial groups, with an increase in fatal overdose rates by 100% over the five-year period.
“Overdose can happen to anyone and is ravaging communities across the state of Wisconsin. Black people have been disproportionately impacted by the overdose crisis – and the problem is only getting worse,” said Diana Kumar, a program manager for the Overdose Prevention Program at Vital Strategies. “The good news is that there are life-saving medications and interventions like NARCAN® available to people that can reverse overdose and prevent death. We applaud Clean Slate Milwaukee for taking steps to combat the overdose crisis in Milwaukee by providing overdose prevention education during the annual Juneteenth celebration and hosting a NARCAN® training.”
People wanting to learn more about opioids, prevention of opioid use disorder, and treatment and recovery should visit the Dose of Reality webpages on the DHS website. Dose of Reality is a joint effort between DHS and the Wisconsin Department of Justice to end Wisconsin’s opioid epidemic.
Clean Slate Milwaukee will be tabling at the Juneteenth Celebration street festival from 9am to 4pm, where community members can receive overdose prevention education and information about the upcoming training.
The NARCAN® training will be held at the City of Milwaukee Office of African American Affairs (4830 W. Fond du Lac Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53216), second floor conference room, on Saturday June 25 from 11-1:30pm. A free lunch will be provided to those participating in the training. Clean Slate Milwaukee also provides training on expunging criminal records and will provide resources on how to access this important information.
Contact: Tony Newman, Vital Strategies: 646-335-5384
Shanyeill McCloud, Clean Slate Milwaukee: 414-627-3051