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What Is The New "Good Samaritan" Law In Illinois?

November 2012---What Is The New "Good Samaritan" Law In Illinois?

I was recently speaking to a friend of mine from Illinois named Dawn Geras. Dawn is the founder of Save Abandoned Babies and is very active in trying to promote positive social change. She told me about a new Good Samaritan law in Illinois. Initially I didn't think much of it, assuming it was just like the Good Samaritan law here in Ohio.....it's not. It's a Good Samaritan law with a drug twist. A law that a growing number of states are implementing.  

Illinois is experiencing the same "opiate explosion" the rest of the country is. The problem with opiates is that the overdose and death rate is very high, compared to other drugs. Like I have said before, "it's very easy to die on opiates."

This creates a common scenario. People are together at a friends house, party or any type of gathering. They are shooting heroin, snorting pills or ingesting drugs of some sort. One, or more, of the people overdoses. The other people know that the victim is overdosing and needs medical help, but they don't call 911 for fear they will get into trouble if police find drugs in the house. So, the victim needlessly dies.

Or the victim gets "dumped" outside a medical facility, with the hopes they will be found and treated. Many times that treatment never comes, and the person dies, because medical personnel are unaware the victim was dumped on their property.

Many overdose scenarios can be "fixed" by medical personnel, but only if the call comes in time. Only if medical personnel know they are needed. Every second you wait, the closer the victim comes to death.

Illinois decided to combat that fear. To allow people to make the call without fear of arrest and prosecution just because a "little dab" of drugs are found in the house or in their possession.

It's called the Emergency Medical Services Access Act (EMSAA)(Senate Bill 1701)(Public Act 097-0678). More commonly referred to as the Good Samaritan law. It became law in Illinois on June 1st 2012. Here is how it works:

The following is copied directly from the Illinois General Assembly Website. The next two paragraphs are a bit dry, but well worth reading.

Synopsis As Introduced
Amends the Illinois Controlled Substances Act and the Methamphetamine Control and Community Protection Act. Provides that a person who, in good faith, seeks or obtains emergency medical assistance for someone experiencing an overdose shall not be charged or prosecuted for Class 4 felony possession of a controlled, counterfeit, or look-alike substance, a controlled substance analog, or Class 3 felony methamphetamine if evidence for the possession charge was acquired as a result of the person seeking or obtaining emergency medical assistance. Provides that a person who is experiencing an overdose shall not be charged or prosecuted for Class 4 felony possession of a controlled, counterfeit, or look-alike substance, or a controlled substance analog, or in the case of methamphetamine Class 3 felony possession if evidence for the possession charge was acquired as a result of the person seeking or obtaining emergency medical assistance. Provides that the action of seeking or obtaining emergency medical assistance for an overdose may be used as a mitigating factor in a criminal prosecution for Class 3 felony or higher possession, manufacture or delivery of a controlled, counterfeit, or look-alike substance or a controlled substance analog, or in the case of methamphetamine Class 2 felony or higher possession, manufacture or delivery of methamphetamine. Effective immediately.

Replaces the title and everything after the enacting clause. Reinserts the provisions of the bill. Amends the Illinois Controlled Substances Act. Provides that the limited immunity shall only apply to a person possessing a specified recovered amount for possession of a controlled, look-alike, or counterfeit substance or a controlled substance analog in violation of the Act. Amends the Methamphetamine Control and Community Protection Act. Provides that the limited immunity shall only apply to a person possessing a recovered amount of less than one gram of methamphetamine or a substance containing methamphetamine. Amends the Unified Code of Corrections. Provides that it is a mitigating factor in sentencing that the defendant sought or obtained emergency medical assistance for an overdose and was convicted of a Class 3 felony or higher possession, manufacture, or delivery of a controlled, counterfeit, or look-alike substance or a controlled substance analog under the Illinois Controlled Substances Act or a Class 2 felony or higher possession, manufacture or delivery of methamphetamine under the Methamphetamine Control and Community Protection Act. Effective immediately.

The motto of this law is "Don't run, call 911."

Chief Kyle J. Fittro

 If you are seeing this page as a single blog post, and would like to read more posts about drugs on the chiefteach website, simply click the blog tab at the top right of this page.

"Fun Facts" About A Few Drugs

October 2012---"Fun Facts" About A Few Drugs

Just A Few Random Thoughts About A Few Random Topics Thrown Into One Post.

If you ever have to deal with a person addicted to pain pills, do not be shocked at the amount of pills some of these people will consume on a day to day basis. I have worked cases with addicts that can eat 30-50 Vicodin pills, 15-25 Dilaudid pills etc.....per day! Believe it.

The US enacted the marijuana tax act of 1937. It did not make the sale of it illegal, it just taxed it so heavily hardly anyone could afford it. What year did Marijuana become truly illegal in the US---1970. First US state to offer medical marijuana---California--1996

We sometimes think of opiate addiction as a "modern day" problem. Not true. Opiate addiction, in one form or another, has plagued mankind for centuries. Addiction was rampant in China in the 1700's. Opium became illegal in China in 1729, but this did nothing to curb the problem.

Heroin was first "invented' in 1874 in London. Developed by Charles Wright as he searched for a non addictive alternative to morphine. When heroin came to the states it was hailed as a cure for opiate addiction. Kind of ironic....but true.

What is the most powerful opiate known to man? This can be argued, but it is generally accepted as Ohmefentanyl. 18,000 X stronger than morphine and NOT used on humans. Usually these "super opiates" are used for tranquilizing large animals.

Teenagers whose parents talk to them regularly about the dangers of drugs are 42% less likely to use drugs than those whose parents don't...yet only 25% of teens report having these types of conversations with their parents.

Did you realize approx. 5000 people under 21 die each year as a result of underage drinking? About 1,600 of these are from car accidents. The rest are from falls, burns, drownings, alcohol poisoning etc.

How does a person act when they have recently ingested a "good amount" of opiates? Very mellow. It's almost like a really drunk person that just sits there and keeps "nodding off". If the person has a high tolerance, or has not ingested "enough" opiates, this behavior may be less pronounced.

Do you quickly need to go from novice to "expert" in the world of drugs? www.chiefteach.com is the answer. 

Chief Kyle J. Fittro

If you are seeing this page as a single blog post, and would like to read more posts about drugs on the chiefteach website, simply click the blog tab at the top right of this page.

Funny Story About A Drug Raid

October 2012---Funny Story About A Drug Raid

True story. I'm sure YOU all know this but....."trafficking"=selling drugs. 

A number of years ago, on a hot summer night, we decided to raid a crack house. The SWAT team silently approached the front door like modern day ninjas, but the bad guys, who had been selling crack out of the house, were standing outside at the rear of the house. As soon as they saw police approaching, these gents jumped into their vehicle, slammed on the gas, tore through the alley and promptly slammed into a telephone pole...(love that part).

Cops pull the passenger out of the car and arrest him. He is very mad and demands to know what he is being arrested for. The officer calmly responds......."trafficking". The guy replies..........sh*t man, that's not possible...... I don't even drive!!

If you need to quickly go from novice to "expert" in the world of drugs, come check out www.chiefteach.com 

Chief Kyle J. Fittro

If you are seeing this page as a single blog post, and would like to read more posts about drugs on the chiefteach website, simply click the blog tab at the top right of this page.

Legal Heroin Clinics?

October 2012---Legal Heroin Clinics?

After many years of heroin addiction, high crime rates and a general decline of certain neighborhoods, some European countries took a "radical" approach and opened legal, government funded heroin clinics. 

Addicts are able to come in twice a day and inject free, pharmaceutical grade heroin. Since the addicts are no longer committing crimes to get their next fix, the crime rates plummeted. No need to rob and steal for drug money when the drugs are free , and very pure. Once the addict is "stabilized" they begin to wean them off of heroin, help them find jobs, expose them to health care etc. Many of them actually find jobs while still addicted to heroin. Their employers allow them to leave twice a day to inject at the clinic.

Taking the addicts out of the streets, taking away their incentive to commit crime and helping them get jobs has paid big dividends according to some countries.

They get the addicts out of the "dark shadows and back alleys". They address the addiction from the aspect of a social problem (like alcoholism) and not a criminal problem. The addicts come for the free heroin but are soon exposed to a whole host of public service programs that help them beat the addiction and become productive citizens.

Should we treat drug addiction like a social problem instead of a crime? What do you think....is the "European Approach" a bunch of bleeding heart junk...or a valid, realistic plan?

To learn what parts of the body addicts can inject drugs into click here.

To understand why heroin is so popular in the USA right now click here.

Chief Kyle J. Fittro

If you are seeing this page as a single blog post, and would like to read more posts about drugs on the chiefteach website, simply click the blog tab at the top right of this page.

What Is The Difference Between Heroin and Pain Pills?

October 2012---What Is The Difference Between Heroin And Pain Pills?

Not a whole lot.

Heroin and pain pills are nearly interchangeable from an addicts perspective. Think of it this way----A guy is a Jack Daniels alcoholic. That's his drink and nothing else. One day, he is out of Jack. All that's available is Vodka. It may not be his drink of choice, but it will certainly get the job done. Heroin and pain pills are very similar in their relationship. It's a little more complicated than that, but that pretty much sums it up.

To understand the difference between powder cocaine and crack cocaine click here.

Chief Kyle J. Fittro

If you are seeing this page as a single blog post, and would like to read more posts about drugs on the chiefteach website, simply click the blog tab at the top right of this page.

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