ANTIMEDIA | June 28, 2017

 

Middletown, Ohio — As states across the country struggle to combat the rising opioid epidemic, one city in Ohio is considering a highly controversial strategy.

In Middletown, the crisis has reached such proportions that a councilman wants to introduce a three-strike rule when it comes to treating opioid overdoses. Under the proposed plan, EMS workers would only be allowed to render aid to patients twice. If someone overdosed a third time, they would be on their own.

“If the dispatcher determines that the person who’s overdosed is someone who’s been part of the program for two previous overdoses and has not completed the community service and has not cooperated in the program, then we wouldn’t dispatch,” Councilman Dan Picard told local media.

“We’ve got to do what we’ve got to do to maintain our financial security,” said Picard, adding that dealing with the crisis is “just costing us too much money.”

Last year in Middletown, there was a total of 532 opioid overdoses, and there have already been 577 so far in 2017. These increases hit the city wallet hardest in the realm of medication. So far this year, the town of 50,000 has spent three times more on Narcan, the drug used to treat opioid overdoses, than it did in all of 2016.

No one argues that Picard’s assessment of the situation is incorrect, but Robert Haley of Cognitive Healthcare Opportunities In Constructive Environmental Settings (CHOICES) says frustration over the growing problem is no excuse to essentially let people die in the streets.

“Since when does a city start endorsing death and since when does a city develop a measure that would knowingly result in death?” he asked while speaking to Ohio’s Journal-News.

Still, Haley says Picard’s extreme proposal has “projected the high level of stress and frustration that’s present at this time” and that the councilman “has a right” to be grasping at straws in an attempt to fight the deadly — and continually growing — opioid epidemic.

Last year, for instance, there were 74 overdose deaths in Middletown. There have already been 51 so far this year. After analyzing data from health agencies around the country, the  New York Times wrote earlier this month that drug overdoses are now the leading cause of death for people under the age of 50.

    Source: ANTIMEDIA

MassPrivateI | June 17, 2017 

 

According to a Stanford Institute project called “The Open Policing Project” which looked at over 100 million police traffic stops.

“Police pull over more than 50,000 drivers on a typical day, more than 20 million motorists every year.”

Does that mean 50,000 people are breaking the law everyday?  Is there an epidemic of lawbreakers on our streets?  

Of course not, so why are police stopping 20 million motorists every year?

Police across the country don’t just ticket millions of Americans every year, they’re also questioning them.

Unfortunately the “Open Policing Project” doesn’t mention how many passengers are stopped and questioned by police every year.

Most people travel with someone, so it’s fair to say police are stopping and questioning approximately 40 million motorists every year.

Police are also using at least fifteen different types of checkpoints to stop and question motorists.

In what country would it be acceptable to stop and question millions of people?  Certainly not America the land of the free, right?

Police take millions of dollars from motorists every year

For years, police have had to meet ticket quotas during their shifts. A Google search for “do police have quotas” returned over 5 million hits and a Google search for “police ticket quotas 2017” returned close to 6 million hits.

In 2015, a Boston Globe story said “Traffic ticket quotas are real.”

“Officers were told to issue more revenue-generating tickets. Office Tom Delaney said that officers who didn’t operate under the system wouldn’t get overtime assignments and other perks.”

It’s the same story across the country.

Police departments send text messages to officers on the road reminding them to reach their quotas during their shifts.  In 2015, an NYPD officer claimed he was texted about not meeting ticket quotas and denied a night off. And a recent story in the Advocate revealed that police deleted every text message to keep the public from reading their texts.

Read Full Story Here

New Device Allows Cops to Download All of Your Mobile phone Activity in Seconds

 

     ANTIMEDIA | June 26, 2017

“Any person who operates a motor vehicle in the state shall be deemed to have given consent to field testing of his or her mobile telephone and/or personal electronic device for the purpose of determining the use thereof while operating a motor vehicle, provided that such testing is conducted by or at the direction of a police officer.”

 

That’s language from the text of a bill currently working its way through the New York state legislature. The legislation would allow cops to search through drivers’ cell phones following traffic incidents — even minor fender-benders — to determine if the person was using their phone while behind the wheel.

Most states have laws banning the use of mobile devices while driving, though such laws are rarely enforced. This is largely because it’s nearly impossible to catch someone in the act. What person would admit to an officer that they broke the law, the argument goes, particularly when it’s after the fact? After all, cops don’t show up until after the accident occurs.

Now, technology exists that would give police the power to plug drivers’ phones into tablet-like devices — being called “textalyzers” in the media — that tell officers exactly what they were doing on their phone and exactly when they were doing it. And if the readout shows a driver was texting while driving, for instance, the legal system will have an additional way to fine them.

“Recording your every click, tap or swipe, it would even know what apps you were using. Police officers could download the data, right on the spot,” Jeff Rossen of NBC News said in a video report on the technology.

Proponents of the legislation point to the rise in traffic fatalities associated with using mobile devices while driving. But rights activists, such as Rashida Richardson of the New York Civil Liberties Union, says it’s a societal issue and no excuse to violate an individual’s privacy:

“This is a concern because our phones have some of our most personal and private information — so we’re certain that if this law is enforced as it is proposed, it will not only violate people’s privacy rights, but also civil liberties.”

New York state isn’t alone. Currently, similar legislation is being considered in Tennessee and New Jersey



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Ohio is Suing Big Pharma Over the Prescription Drug Overdose Epidemic

 

(ANTIMEDIA) Ohio — Joining other states battling a growing epidemic of addictions to prescription painkillers, it was announced Wednesday that Ohio is suing five pharmaceutical corporations for, as reported by the Associated Press, intentionally misleading patients about the dangers of painkillers and promoting benefits of the drugs not backed by science.”

In announcing the lawsuit, Attorney General Mike DeWine said he hopes the legal action will “compel these companies” — Johnson and Johnson, Allergan, Purdue Pharma, Endo Health Solutions, and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries — to “clean up this mess” they helped create.



“In 2014 alone, pharmaceutical companies spent $168 million through sales reps peddling prescription opioids to win over doctors with smooth pitches and glossy brochures that downplayed the risks of the medicines,” DeWine said at a press conference, adding that a fifth of his state’s population was prescribed opioids last year.

The state’s injunction, if successful, would bring a halt to what it considers the pharmaceutical corporations’ “continued deception and misrepresentation in marketing,as well as to allow for monetary awards for both the Ohio government — repayment for taxpayer money spent combatting the epidemic — and citizens who were unnecessarily prescribed painkillers.

In reporting on the news, Reuters highlighted the severity of the backlash now facing the pharmaceutical industry:

“Drug companies including Purdue and Johnson & Johnson have been fighting lawsuits by two California counties, the city of Chicago, four counties in New York and the state of Mississippi over their opioid marketing practices.”

Pharmaceutical companies are also facing a lawsuit from the Cherokee Nation over the opioid crisis.

In 2015, the state of Kentucky was awarded $24 million as part of a settlement from a lawsuit accusing Purdue Pharma of deliberately misleading the public about the addictiveness of the powerful drug OxyContin.

That same year, a record 3,050 Ohioans died from drug overdoses. That figure is expected to rise when the numbers for 2016 are tallied. Attorney General DeWine says it’s a problem that can no longer be ignored, even if the forces against them are mighty.

“We understand what we’re taking on: five huge drug companies,” he said Wednesday. “I don’t want to look back 10 years from now and say we should have had the guts to file…It’s something we have to do.”

 

This article originally published at 

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