The World Affairs Council of Orange County presents:
Unraveling the Deadly Grip of Fentanyl on America & The World featuring:
State Senator Tom Umberg
California is facing an unprecedented drug crisis both in scale and nature, requiring timely legislative responses. Fentanyl, a type of synthetic opioid, is responsible for over two-thirds of drug-related deaths, which spiked last year to 21,000 in California alone. The crisis is especially prevalent in Orange County, with deaths by fentanyl overdose reported to have gone up by 177%, and more potent analogs of fentanyl continued to be found. Moreover, fentanyl is often unknowingly consumed by individuals who believe they are taking other drugs, meaning that the fatal risk of a fentanyl overdose is not taken into consideration by those accidentally taking them, resulting in preventable deaths. Fentanyl precursors are largely sourced from abroad, in places like China and India, which are then shipped to Mexico, where most production takes place. Collaboration with these countries to crack down on fentanyl’s production and movement is integral if wish to halt the fentanyl epidemic in the United States.
To tackle this urgent crisis, Senator Tom Umberg proposes several legislative measures: Senate Bill 60, aimed at preventing drug sales on social media, a main outlet for illicit drugs for the youth; Senate Bill 250, expanding the 9-1-1 Good Samaritan Law and providing fentanyl immunity, encouraging people to report their dealers; Senate Concurrent Resolution 39, establishing National Fentanyl Awareness Day; and Senate Bill 44, also known as Alexandra’s Law, which aims to hold fentanyl sellers accountable for homicide and prevent fentanyl-related deaths through warnings.
An In-Person Dinner Event
Date & Time:
Wednesday, September 20, 2023
5:30 PM: Reception
6:30 PM: Main Program & Q&A
CSUF Titan Student Union
800 N. State College Blvd.
Fullerton, CA 92831
Early Bird Registration!
Register by Sept 13 to receive discounted ticket prices.
Discounted prices below:
Young Professionals members: $35
Thank you to our community partner, ClearSaves!
ClearSaves is an altruistic nonprofit endeavor fervently committed to engendering positive change within society by championing harm reduction. Through its innovative modus operandi, ClearSaves aspires to furnish the populace with vital resources that facilitate the safeguarding of human lives from the perilous peripheries of the opioid crisis.
Check out the ClearSaves table at our event for resources and information on how you can help.
Thank you to our community partner, FentanylSolution.org!
FentanylSolution.org’s mission is to deliver comprehensive education, powerful advocacy, and unwavering community support to eradicate fentanyl deaths in the United States.
Check out the Fentanyl Solution booth at our event for more information and resources on the fentanyl crisis!Christian’s Angelversary – July 19
On Wednesday, July 19, 2023, friends and family showed their support and comforted Tina Burke. She is one of FentanylSolution.org’s board members as well as a Christian’s mom. Christian was a 21-year-old victim of fentanyl poisoning 3 years ago on July 19, 2020.
He was a senior at the University of Arizona, relishing the summer season back at home in Mission Viejo. A testament to his work ethic and determination, he understood the value of hard work and its rewards. From his
experience as a quarterback and wide receiver for his hometown teams to his devoted studies, he often witnessed the fruits of his labor.
Yet, Christian’s vibrant persona transcended his diligent nature. His presence illuminated any room, captivating others with his spirited personality. People were naturally drawn to him, enchanted by his infectious laughter and captivating smile, which exuded love and joy.
Tragically, on July 19, 2020, Christian’s life took an abrupt and devastating turn.
He purchased and consumed a Percocet, unaware that it was a counterfeit pill containing a lethal combination of fentanyl and acetaminophen. Within moments, this beloved 21-year-old cherished son, brother, boyfriend, athlete, and college student, lost his life due to the consumption of a single fake pill.
Join us in our crucial mission to save lives from the fentanyl crisis and drive impactful awareness. Your donation today will make a significant difference!
Drew was seven months clean from heroin. He’d moved from Washington state to Florida with his mother to get away from any chance of falling back into his old life. He was in the top of his welding class with his sights set on a career in underwater welding. On the one-year anniversary of his father’s death, he wanted a moment of freedom from the pain of that memory. A friend gave him some cocaine: a one-time distraction that wouldn’t break his sobriety.
Unknown to Drew or his friend, the cocaine had been cut with fentanyl. One hit and Drew was dead. His mother found him when she returned from work to invite him to their nightly ritual of procedural dramas and daily debrief. Fortunately, he
didn’t die alone. His constant companion, his mastiff, Cerberus, watched over him until the paramedics took him away.
This is personal for FentanylSolution.org because it’s the story of our Development Officer, Shane Wood’s little brother.
Our employees and board all have stories of how fentanyl has affected their lives and we want to educate individuals not only on how to recognize the signs of overdose and Fentanyl poisoning, but train people on how to use naloxone to save a life. Your donation goes directly to this work.
107,375 people in the United States died of drug overdoses and drug poisonings in the 12-month period ending in January 2022. 67% of those deaths involved synthetic opioids like fentanyl. YOUR DONATION WILL HELP RAISE AWARENESS OF THIS DEADLY DRUG AND BRING AN END OF FENTANYL DEATHS.
Shane is trying to raise $50,000 by July 25, 2023 in honor of the sixth anniversary of Drew’s death.
Donate here: Donation Link
On Saturday, June 24th, 2023, Downtown Santa Ana was filled with vibrant energy as OC Pride, a non-profit LGBTQ+ organization, organized the Brilliant Resilience Pride Festival and Parade. The event was a true testament to unity, and the performances electrified the atmosphere.
It was an immense source of pride for us to champion our cause and distribute hundreds of our ‘Stop Fentanyl Packs’. Each pack contains 2 doses of naloxone and 2 fentanyl test strips to festival attendees.
As we stood in solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community, we were overwhelmed by the outpouring of support we received in return.
Countless people shared their heart-wrenching ‘fentanyl stories’ of losing loved ones—mothers, fathers, siblings, daughters, sons, and friends—to illicit fentanyl poisonings. The fentanyl crisis has permeated the lives of almost every individual in some manner or another.
The time for action is now. Let us raise awareness, disseminate information, and ensure that naloxone and fentanyl test strips remain easily accessible. If you find yourself in need, seek help. Ask us to host a ‘Save-a-Life Lunch & Learn’ – a training in which we go over the dangers of illicit fentanyl, how to use naloxone and provide Stop Fentanyl Packs. If you would like to purchase fentanyl test strips for yourself, your friends, family or community, check out this link, WiseBatch Fentanyl Test Strips. You can also be a volunteer and become either a trainer or ambassador. Please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Together, we can make a difference.
Join us in our crucial mission to save lives from the fentanyl crisis and drive impactful awareness. Your donation today will make a significant difference!
On Father’s Day, Sunday, June 16, 2023, a powerful movement unfolded in front of the California Attorney General’s office in Los Angeles, as groups from all across Southern California gathered for the Father’s Against Fentanyl rally and press conference. Led by the passionate advocate Matt Capelouto, parents and loved ones who have tragically lost family members to fentanyl poisoning came together to shed light on the devastating impact of the fentanyl crisis. Their urgent plea was directed at California Attorney General Rob Bonta, himself a father, to take decisive action in addressing the fentanyl epidemic.
Raising Awareness and Demanding Action
The Father’s Against Fentanyl rally on Father’s Day was a poignant and symbolic event. Grieving parents and their allies stood united, sharing their personal stories of loss and emphasizing the critical need for effective measures to combat the fentanyl epidemic. Their heartfelt appeals echoed the experiences of countless families devastated by this deadly drug, magnifying the urgency for action.
During the rally, representatives from various news organizations attended the press conference and conducted interviews with participants. Among those sharing their insights and experiences was Shane Wood, the Director of Development at FentanylSolution.org. The organization, known for its unwavering commitment to combating the fentanyl crisis, joined Matt Capelouto and his organization DrugInducedHomicide.org, has been a leading force in raising awareness, advocating for policy changes, and supporting affected families.
Both organizations have played a crucial role in providing vital resources and information to educate communities about the dangers of fentanyl. Their websites serve as a comprehensive platform offering facts, statistics, and guidance on recognizing and responding to fentanyl-related risks. Through their initiatives, FentanylSolution.org has worked tirelessly to empower individuals and foster dialogue on this pressing issue.
Addressing the Fentanyl Crisis
The prevalence of fentanyl-related deaths has reached alarming levels in recent years, not only in Southern California but across the United States. Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid that is significantly more potent than heroin and morphine, poses a severe threat to public health. Its presence in illicit drug markets has led to a surge in overdose fatalities, leaving families devastated and communities in turmoil.
To effectively combat the fentanyl crisis, a comprehensive and coordinated approach is necessary. This includes increasing penalties for drug traffickers who kill with illicit fentanyl. FentanylSolution.org, along with other dedicated organizations and community activists, advocates for these measures and urges policymakers, including California Attorney General Rob Bonta, to take decisive action.
The Role of California Attorney General Rob Bonta
Rob Bonta, the California Attorney General and a father himself, holds a position of influence and responsibility in addressing the fentanyl crisis. As the state’s top law enforcement officer, he plays a vital role in shaping policies and directing resources to combat the epidemic. The Father’s Against Fentanyl rally urged Attorney General Bonta to prioritize this urgent issue, employing his authority and influence to drive meaningful change.
Additionally, Assemblywoman Mia Bonta, Rob Bonta’s wife, serves on the Assembly Public Safety Committee, which plays a crucial role in shaping legislation related to public safety, including penalties for fentanyl-related offenses. The rally participants expressed concern about the committee’s lack of progress in passing bills with penalties, highlighting the urgent need for action and collaboration across all levels of government.
The Father’s Against Fentanyl rally on Father’s Day was a powerful demonstration of the collective determination to combat the fentanyl crisis and protect communities from the devastating consequences of this lethal drug. Led by Matt Capelouto and supported by FentanylSolution.org, grieving parents and loved ones came together, sharing their stories and intensifying the call for tangible action.
As the fight against fentanyl continues, it is crucial for organizations like FentanylSolution.org to provide essential resources, engage the public, and advocate for policy changes. Together, with the leadership of California Attorney General Rob Bonta and the collective efforts of policymakers, community activists, and affected families, we can forge a path towards a future free from the grip of this deadly epidemic.
As fentanyl overdose continues to be the leading cause of death among teens in Orange County and individuals aged 18-45 in the country, there is a growing focus on implementing precautionary measures. Among these measures, Fentanyl Test Strips (FTS) have emerged.
These test strips serve as a risk mitigator, particularly due to the uneven distribution of fentanyl (FTS Legis. Analysis). This is referred to as the “chocolate chip cookie effect.” In this analogy, the cookie symbolizes the entire substance like a pill, while the chocolate chips represent grains of fentanyl.
For example, even if a portion of the substance tests negative, there remains a significant likelihood of fentanyl being present in other parts of the substance or pill. To minimize risks as much as possible, it is crucial to dissolve the entire substance and test it.
To purchase WiseBatch Harm Reduction Fentanyl Test Strips, go to the link: WiseBatch
Fentanyl Test Strips are legal in the state of California.
Many inquire, “Is it safe to take a substance even after using a fentanyl test strip?” Ultimately, the answer is no. While it does help mitigate risks when testing the entire substance, there is still a possibility of fentanyl being present in the container it was given in or anything it has come into contact with, in addition to the 1-2% chance of the fentanyl strip failing. Even a mere 1% chance of fentanyl’s presence still poses a significant risk of overdose since only a minuscule amount equivalent to a grain of sand is enough to kill.
To purchase fentanyl test strips, click here. Be sure to check if fentanyl test strips are legal in your state.
This article includes an affiliate link.
President Joe Biden’s drug czar has declared that the use of fentanyl mixed with Xylazine, an animal tranquilizer known as “tranq,” has become an emerging threat across the United States. The use of this drug combination has been linked to a sharp increase in overdose deaths, and the government is required to develop a federal plan to address the crisis. This declaration by Dr. Rahul Gupta, the director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, marks the first time a presidential administration has formally labeled an illicit drug an “emerging threat” and then required the federal government to take further action.
What is fentanyl mixed with Xylazine, and why is it a problem?
Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid that is often mixed with other drugs to increase its potency. Xylazine is a veterinary sedative approved for use in animals, but not for human use.
When mixed with fentanyl and sold on the illicit drug market, it has caused a sharp increase in overdose deaths across the United States. Xylazine, which is not an opioid, cannot be counteracted by the opioid overdose antidote, naloxone, in case of an overdose.The spread of Xylazine-laced fentanyl has exacerbated the nationwide addiction crisis, ravaging communities and deepening the toll of addiction.
Why is this an emerging threat?
The federal government has reported that overdose deaths involving Xylazine have risen in every region of the country in recent years. From 2020 to 2021, Xylazine-linked deaths increased more than 1,000% in the South, 750% in the West, and more than 500% in the Midwest, according to a DEA report (DEA Report). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 66% of drug poisoning deaths in the United States involve synthetic opioids like fentanyl (CDC).
What actions will the federal government take?
The declaration by Dr. Gupta requires the Biden administration to develop a federal plan to address the crisis. The government must publish a response plan within 90 days and send implementation guidance to agencies within 120 days, among other actions. The federal government will be mindful that Xylazine has legitimate uses in the veterinary profession and the agriculture industry while working on a whole-of-government response.
What are the dangers of ingesting xylazine?
Xylazine is not approved for human use, and ingesting it can cause serious, life-threatening effects, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). People who inject it can develop flesh wounds, including blackened, rotting tissue (known as necrosis), which, if untreated, may result in amputation, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).
In conclusion, the use of fentanyl mixed with Xylazine is an emerging threat facing the United States that has caused a sharp increase in overdose deaths. The federal government is required to develop a response plan to address this crisis, which includes evidence-based prevention, treatment, and supply reduction. It is important for parents to be aware of the dangers of drug use and to educate their children about the risks involved.
Fentanyl is a highly potent synthetic opioid that has caused immense harm to communities across the United States, including California. The drug, which is up to 100 times more potent than morphine, has been linked to a sharp increase in overdose deaths in recent years, leading to calls for harsher penalties for drug dealers who sell the substance.
FentanylSolution.org, a leading advocacy group committed to raising awareness about the dangers of fentanyl and advocating for stricter penalties for drug dealers who sell the substance, is proud to announce the launch of its $2.2 million Poll-to-Prop initiative.
The initiative seeks to gather public opinion about the need for stricter penalties for drug dealers who sell fentanyl and murder their customers. The results of the poll will be used to draft a statewide proposition that will be put on the ballot for the next presidential election. FentanylSolution.org has partnered with McNally Temple Associates to conduct the poll and gather data that will be used to shape the proposition.
The Poll-to-Prop initiative is a response to the lack of progress of legislative bills aimed at enforcing severe penalties for drug dealers who sell fentanyl and harm their customers. Despite repeated efforts, these bills have failed to pass the Public Safety Committee, prompting FentanylSolution.org to take the initiative and work towards bringing this issue directly to the public through a proposed proposition on the ballot.
“We believe that drug dealers who sell fentanyl and murder their customers must be held accountable for their actions,” said Janice M. Celeste, President & CEO of FentanylSolution.org. “The Poll-to-Prop initiative is a crucial step in our efforts to raise awareness about the need for stricter penalties for these criminals.”
The $2.2 million initiative marks a significant investment in the fight against fentanyl and represents a major commitment by FentanylSolution.org to its mission of creating safer communities across California. The organization is committed to bringing the proposition to the ballot in the next presidential election and ensuring that the voices of Californians are heard on this important issue.
FentanylSolution.org is dedicated to creating awareness about the dangers of fentanyl and advocating for the development of effective policies that can help combat the opioid epidemic in California. The organization works closely with law enforcement, public health officials, and community leaders to raise awareness about the dangers of fentanyl and provide support to individuals and families affected by the epidemic.
By launching the $2.2 million Poll-to-Prop initiative, FentanylSolution.org is taking a major step forward in the fight against the fentanyl epidemic in California. The organization’s commitment to gathering public opinion and shaping policy that reflects the needs and concerns of Californians is crucial in the ongoing effort to combat the opioid crisis. As we move forward, it is important that we continue to support organizations like FentanylSolution.org that are working tirelessly to create safer communities and combat the devastating effects of the opioid epidemic.
Be sure to sign up to be Friends of FentanylSolution.org to stay up-to-date about the Poll-to-Prop initiative.
Grammy Award-winning rapper, Coolio’s cause of death has been revealed as a fentanyl overdose, according to a recent report by CNN and The New York Times. The rapper, whose real name is Artis Leon Ivey Jr., passed away on September 28, 2022, at the age of 59.
The New York Times reported that Coolio had tested positive for fentanyl, a synthetic opioid that is 50 times more potent than heroin, 100 times more potent than morphine (CDC) and has been responsible for a surge in overdose deaths in recent years. The amount of fentanyl detected in Coolio’s system was small, but it was determined to be the cause of death, along with coronary artery disease.
Coolio rose to fame in the 90s with hits such as “Gangsta’s Paradise,” which won a Grammy for Best Rap Performance in 1996. He was also known for his appearances on reality shows such as “Celebrity Big Brother” and “Wife Swap.” His death was met with an outpouring of condolences from fans and fellow artists.
So many families including Coolio’s have suffered the loss of their loved ones. The revelation of Coolio’s fentanyl overdose highlights the ongoing opioid epidemic in the United States, where thousands of people die every year due to opioid-related overdoses (CDC).Fountain Valley Officials Applaud Naloxone Program at Area Schools
At the first Fountain Valley mayor’s breakfast of the year, held on March 30 at Fountain Valley Regional Hospital in Orange County, California, several local issues were discussed, including a recently established drug program in schools. The program, which was initiated last November, aims to prevent overdoses in youth by placing drug stations with naloxone, a nasal spray that can reverse the effects of opioids, in schools. The program comes in response to the growing number of children overdosing on fentanyl across the state and country.
Why is this program important?
The opioid crisis has become a major concern in many communities, and youth are particularly vulnerable to its effects. Illicit drugs laced with fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid, are increasingly being sold to unsuspecting youth, often through social media platforms. This has led to a rise in overdoses among young people, including in schools. The drug program in Fountain Valley schools aims to address this issue and provide a timely response to overdoses, potentially saving lives.
What does the program involve?
The program involves placing naloxone stations in each elementary school, middle school, and high school in the Fountain Valley area. These stations are equipped with naloxone, a medication that can quickly reverse the effects of opioids and prevent overdose deaths. The naloxone is administered through a nasal spray, making it easy to use by school staff or other trained personnel in case of an emergency. The program was initiated by the Fountain Valley Fire Department and Emergency Medical Services teams, in collaboration with city officials.
Success of the program
Since its implementation, the program has already proven successful in saving a student’s life. In January, a student at Ocean High School who had taken an unknown substance bought off the street that was laced with fentanyl was administered naloxone by a teacher, according to Fountain Valley Fire Department Chief Bill McQuaid. The timely treatment with naloxone, also known as Narcan, saved her life, highlighting the importance of having naloxone stations in schools.
Why is this program necessary?
Lauren Lee, a former emergency room nurse who developed the plan for the school stations and currently serves as the Emergency Medical Services manager for the city fire department, emphasizes the importance of the program for student safety. She notes that a growing number of kids, including those in elementary school and older, are buying illicit drugs from dealers on social media sites, often through platforms like Snapchat. These drugs are sometimes misrepresented as harmless, such as marijuana gummies, when in fact they are laced with dangerous opioids like fentanyl. The presence of naloxone stations in schools can provide a crucial intervention in case of an overdose, potentially saving lives.
In conclusion, the drug program implemented in Fountain Valley schools to prevent overdoses in youth is a timely and important initiative. With the opioid crisis affecting communities across the country, it’s crucial to have measures in place to address the growing number of overdoses, including among young people. The presence of naloxone stations in schools can provide a lifeline in case of an overdose, potentially saving lives and protecting the well-being of students. As the program continues to be implemented and expanded, it is hoped that the need for naloxone stations in schools will decrease in the future, reflecting a reduction in overdoses and improved awareness about the dangers of opioids among youth. In the meantime, the program serves as a valuable resource to protect the health and safety of students in Fountain Valley schools. So far, the program has already demonstrated success in saving lives, and its continued implementation and expansion are critical in addressing the ongoing opioid crisis and protecting our youth.