Lake Worth mayor on drug overdose problem: ‘It’s happening everywhere’

Drug-Overdose-Deaths-Rise-Across-America-300x200LAKE WORTH — Many times, when the city issues a proclamation, it’s to celebrate a happy occasion.

Not Tuesday.

With a heavy heart, Mayor Pam Triolo declared Aug. 31 Overdose Awareness Day to spotlight what has become a nationwide concern.

“This isn’t the friendliest or most pleasant of proclamations,” Triolo said.

Then the mayor went on to cite some grim statistics. Drug overdoses are the No. 1 cause of injury death in the nation, surpassing deaths from car accidents and guns. There’s an accidental overdose every 11 minutes in this country.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 47,055 people died from a drug overdose in the United States in 2014. That’s 19 people per day.

“We’re facing an epidemic in the state, in the country and right here in our community,” Triolo said. “We’re seeing it on our streets on a daily basis. But it’s not just Lake Worth, it’s West Palm Beach, it’s Boynton Beach, it’s Delray Beach. It’s happening everywhere. We’re all in this together and we’ll have to find some solutions.”