Our Letter to Middletown, Ohio Town Councilman Dan Picard

It is nearly impossible to wrap our heads around first the ignorance of this man, but second the cold, calculated, cruel nature. Please have a watch of this video: http://www.journal-news.com/news/middletown-council-member-can-stop-responding-overdoses/PUUgYB815ROOGRxIP28bTP/

Our response is below. We urge you all to send your own response. Here are the email addresses for Middletown’s government officials: http://www.cityofmiddletown.org/council/members.aspx

Mr. Picard,

We are a nonprofit organization that is fervently committed to reducing the stigma associated with substance use disorders, advocating for policy change on behalf of those that suffer with them, and raising awareness in hopes that educating our communities will help to reduce substance related death by means of rapid response, implementation of health and human service protocols, and, ideally and ultimately, recovery.

In short, our goal is to save lives so,needless to say, we were more than appalled by your recent proposition to refuse medical treatment to overdose patients. It pains and infuriates us to see how easily you have turned human lives into dollar signs and an impact on your budget.

We understand that you have decided against running for re-election. While that may lessen your interest in public opinion, it does not erase your responsibility to the people you currently serve. To suggest that you withhold emergency medical response to overdose patients is manslaughter at best and premeditated murder at worse. You won’t be “teaching them a lesson” or “making them afraid to overdose in Middletown.” You will be directly contributing to the exponential increase of deaths in your community. We will be sure to empower your community with the information they need to sue you and the entire town government if you choose to take this path for every life that is lost.

One key factor you are failing to recognize is that substance use disorders are exactly that, disorders. They are medical conditions that, particularly in cases of Heroin/Opiate use disorders, vastly alter brain chemistry. They compel the individual to use without “reason”. They convince the individual that using is a matter of life and death. To propose that you can withhold treatment, actively participate in the neglect of your citizens, and sit idly by as you watch the massacre that you created in the name of reducing use in your community is ignorant beyond words.

You have chosen the path of, “let them die and that will teach them a lesson.” The fact that you can even ponder this concept, much less suggest its implementation, is disgusting and sadistic. Your statements and suggestions come dangerously close to murder-for-hire. You have declared yourself as the Iceman, willing to trade lives for dollars, and we do not intend to mince words for the sake of courtesy as you have not extended courtesy to those around you.

We hope those in your family, those in your community, and those that share your responsibility to Middletown by holding public office do their very best to minimize the damage you intend to cause. We hope that the nurses, lawyers, public officials, and citizens that suffer quietly with these tremendously difficult disorders stand in firm opposition against you and any like you that consider human life expendable. More than anything, we hope Middletown can find a way to move forward in the face of this epidemic despite your best attempts to set them back.

As a public servant, your job is to serve. To serve is to find the resources necessary to keep your citizens safe and healthy. A more constructive and appropriate use of your time would be to compel your governor, your higher elected officials and the federal government to bring in the help necessary to save lives – not just with Naloxone, but with compassion, harm reduction and treatment.

Mr. Picard you are but one man. You may be a disturbed and misguided man but, you are only one man. There are many of us, and we will never stop fighting to save lives. The people you intend to let die are members of our families. We will always stand with them. Always.

Signed,
Alexis Pleus on behalf of all of the Rainmakers and 5,000 followers of Truth Pharm
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6 Comments

  1. I disagree that refusing to treat a third time would be manslaughter. It’s called suicide and it’s a choice.

  2. You keep protecting weak, or stupid people, and every time you do that, you hurt people like myself, who require painkillers to live any semblance of a normal life. YOU are the disease. You enable people to be weak, and stupid. You are weak, and stupid. Weak, and stupid, people are not an endangered species, but if you continue like you are doing, intelligent people will become extinct. Stop protecting stupid people.

  3. Alexsis your letter lacks any proposed alternative solution. Don’t just complain. Solve the problem. How do YOU propose municipalities mitigate these costs? Perhaps they stop paying the firemen after the second trip and require them to respond in their personal vehicles? Or perhaps the costs are balance-billed to the overdose victim’s family? Is it acceptable to you that the city go bankrupt under to burden that overdoses victims are placing on it? Shaming someone is all the rage these days, but unless you acknowledge the problem and propose an alternative solution, please keep your angst to yourself.

  4. What happens when all of the town’s funds are depleted? That is a real possibility which could drain other vital resources from is struggling community.

  5. What is your solution? More drugs on top of more drugs? Where is Personal responsibility? We all want to help others in times of need but enabling an addict, to continue their self destruction makes you complicit ~Fire and Gasoline~ And now You can beat you chest and say the Evil people wont give us more money

  6. I semi agree with his stance on this. Somewhere in there is the blurred line of personal responsibility versus public responsibility. I’m all for treatment programs, but people have to want it. We throw millions of dollars a year into these programs in the county that I work in, and sad to say, the success rate is dismal. It also has a crippling effect on the other services that people might need. What if in a city the size of Middletow, with limited resources, a paramedic responds to an addict that’s overdosed for a third time and they can’t respond to someone having a heart attack or any other number of emergencies? Don’t you think the public would be outraged? Of course they would, and rightfully so.

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