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house Bill H.R. 4259

Lifesaving Librarians: Making Grants Available for Library Staff to Purchase & Learn to Use Opioid Overdose Reversal Kits

Argument in favor

Unfortunately, public libraries have become a hotspot for heroin and opioid overdoses. Providing libraries with grants to buy overdose reversal kits and train employees in their use will save lives.

Jama's Opinion
···
12/30/2017
As a librarian (serving a county of only 20,000), I can tell you that we deal with a vast range of problems. I’ve already requested that we keep an epi-pen on hand, if possible, and would love to have several of us trained in CPR and other life-saving practices. In the past, we have found small digital scales in our bathrooms, where people have been weighing drugs, as well as needles outside our doors. We’ve had to call the ambulance for patrons for a variety of reasons. However, having access to these resources can help us save lives in the minutes it takes for emergency services personnel to arrive. Some libraries have already saved lives with these drugs, as well as with staff certified in CPR, etc. Every little bit helps.
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Jasmine's Opinion
···
12/30/2017
I’m a public librarian at a major library on the east coast. We have opioid-addicted patrons visit us daily. I feel like training in this area would be ideal; equip librarians and library staff to save lives! I mean, we already do more than just check out books! :)
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jeannytrew's Opinion
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12/30/2017
Six heroin overdoses in 2 months at McPherson's Square Library in Philadelphia, June 2017. If breathing stops, death can occur in 2 minutes. If this is your family member, is that 2 minutes a gamble (while waiting for paramedics) you want to take? https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2017/06/02/drug-tourists-keep-overdosing-at-this-library-heres-how-employees-are-saving-their-lives/
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Argument opposed

A grant program to provide library employees with opioid overdose reversal kits and training in their use won’t have enough of an impact, and there are better ways to fight this problem.

OlderNWiser's Opinion
···
12/30/2017
There are real solutions to this problem: clean needles, free drugs, free treatment, changing the inequities that provoke drug addiction, along with ending the inequalities and hopelessness that often underly addiction. Our policies of imprisoning people with mental illnesses and addictions belongs in the 16th century. We can and must take care of each other in support of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
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operaman's Opinion
···
12/30/2017
If I were a opiate/junky, the library would be my first place to hide. Yep, the dark catacombs, the musty smells of old books and a few pages to heat my next fix. So realistically, just use security at the entry and the little old lady librarian can pick up a phone ☎️ to seek police/security. So no bill or cash too pump up the local library system or it’s support of the local PP or a feminist movement. Can you imagine junkies coming in to a library to shoot up with supervision? Will the library have fenced areas for children? All those little eyes watching junkies pass out or convulse with ODs. Will ambulances be parked outside for transport? Sounds like a can of worms too me and the creation of a “Junky Safe Space.”
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Jennifer 's Opinion
···
12/30/2017
Who knew? I’ve been checking the liked box on many posts regarding addicts not hanging out in libraries, but after reading the bill, this is what it says: “Sponsoring Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY) introduced this bill to help libraries, which have become a hotspot for heroin and opioid overdoses, by providing them with grants to purchase overdose reversal kits and train employees to use them.” You lead us to believe that libraries are a hot spot for drug users? Yet the details cite no statistics or valuable research...are these homeless people coming in from the cold or high schools students, maybe? I just find this hard to believe. So until you can give me better information on 1) total #’s of persons affected; 2) geographical breakdown: e.g. rural vs urban or nationwide vs mainly in large cities; 3) age breakdown, etc, I’m sorry, I’m a Nay!
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      Committee on Energy and Commerce
      Health
    IntroducedNovember 6th, 2017

What is House Bill H.R. 4259?

This bill — known as the Lifesaving Librarians Act — would allow public libraries in high-intensity drug trafficking areas to receive grants to purchase naloxone rescue kits to reverse opioid overdoses and to train employees in the use of the kits. Libraries would have to keep a full-time, trained employee on staff and couldn’t lack such an employee for more than 30 days or else they would no longer be eligible for the grants. Grants would be authorized through fiscal year 2022.

Impact

Overdose victims; public libraries and their employees; and the Dept. of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Cost of House Bill H.R. 4259

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-Depth: Sponsoring Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY) introduced this bill to help libraries, which have become a hotspot for heroin and opioid overdoses, by providing them with grants to purchase overdose reversal kits and train employees to use them:

“Library staff across the country are ready to save lives when people overdose -- now it’s up to us to make sure they have the training and tools they need to provide immediate assistance to people who are struggling with addiction. New York State’s programs that provide this training are proven lifesavers -- and it’s time we build on that success and take these programs nationwide.”

Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: FangXiaNuo / iStock)

AKA

Lifesaving Librarians Act

Official Title

To amend the Public Health Service Act to authorize the Secretary of Health and Human Services to award grants for naloxone rescue kits in public libraries, and for other purposes.

    As a librarian (serving a county of only 20,000), I can tell you that we deal with a vast range of problems. I’ve already requested that we keep an epi-pen on hand, if possible, and would love to have several of us trained in CPR and other life-saving practices. In the past, we have found small digital scales in our bathrooms, where people have been weighing drugs, as well as needles outside our doors. We’ve had to call the ambulance for patrons for a variety of reasons. However, having access to these resources can help us save lives in the minutes it takes for emergency services personnel to arrive. Some libraries have already saved lives with these drugs, as well as with staff certified in CPR, etc. Every little bit helps.
    Like (113)
    Follow
    Share
    There are real solutions to this problem: clean needles, free drugs, free treatment, changing the inequities that provoke drug addiction, along with ending the inequalities and hopelessness that often underly addiction. Our policies of imprisoning people with mental illnesses and addictions belongs in the 16th century. We can and must take care of each other in support of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
    Like (58)
    Follow
    Share
    I’m a public librarian at a major library on the east coast. We have opioid-addicted patrons visit us daily. I feel like training in this area would be ideal; equip librarians and library staff to save lives! I mean, we already do more than just check out books! :)
    Like (44)
    Follow
    Share
    If I were a opiate/junky, the library would be my first place to hide. Yep, the dark catacombs, the musty smells of old books and a few pages to heat my next fix. So realistically, just use security at the entry and the little old lady librarian can pick up a phone ☎️ to seek police/security. So no bill or cash too pump up the local library system or it’s support of the local PP or a feminist movement. Can you imagine junkies coming in to a library to shoot up with supervision? Will the library have fenced areas for children? All those little eyes watching junkies pass out or convulse with ODs. Will ambulances be parked outside for transport? Sounds like a can of worms too me and the creation of a “Junky Safe Space.”
    Like (34)
    Follow
    Share
    Six heroin overdoses in 2 months at McPherson's Square Library in Philadelphia, June 2017. If breathing stops, death can occur in 2 minutes. If this is your family member, is that 2 minutes a gamble (while waiting for paramedics) you want to take? https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2017/06/02/drug-tourists-keep-overdosing-at-this-library-heres-how-employees-are-saving-their-lives/
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    Libraries offer much to the public and much of the public does flow through those public places so an extension of this services is reasonable. Maybe their training could include more emergency healthcare fair such as mouth to mouth resuscitation, wound care and various forms of advance first aide.
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    Who knew? I’ve been checking the liked box on many posts regarding addicts not hanging out in libraries, but after reading the bill, this is what it says: “Sponsoring Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY) introduced this bill to help libraries, which have become a hotspot for heroin and opioid overdoses, by providing them with grants to purchase overdose reversal kits and train employees to use them.” You lead us to believe that libraries are a hot spot for drug users? Yet the details cite no statistics or valuable research...are these homeless people coming in from the cold or high schools students, maybe? I just find this hard to believe. So until you can give me better information on 1) total #’s of persons affected; 2) geographical breakdown: e.g. rural vs urban or nationwide vs mainly in large cities; 3) age breakdown, etc, I’m sorry, I’m a Nay!
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    As a retired librarian I can say the public expects you to be all things to all people. I learned CPR, how to use an AED, how to evacuate in disasters, how to evacuate because of an active shooter. I don’t see why we shouldn’t know the basics to save a life whatever the reason. Libraries are often refuges for people who don’t have internet, who can’t afford to buy books, who just need to get in from the cold. We are there for the community. The opioid crisis is part of our reality.
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    Sean, you are likely from Upstate NY, because this sounds like a Republican proposal. This is a band-aid fix and does not address the root-cause of the issue. This would be a costly venture and not provide an actual solution to the epidemic. We, as a Country, need focus on solutions that address the root-cause of all of our ailments, so they do not continue to drain our finances, our time, our health, our lives. Like others have stated, if we removed profit from our healthcare system, many of our ailments would resolve themselves. Capitalism is failing because the greed-afflicted persons believe that there needs to be astronomical profits on every single product or service. Healthcare should be an inalienable right and it should be provided by a non-profits with ethical governance policies and preferably, a single-payer system. Our hyper-capitalism model only works if unethical corporations and people are creating issues, so that they can provide a band-aid solution to make astronomical profits in an attempt to satiate their greed. America has an epidemic, and it is greed. The root cause of our stress and poor health is greed. Provide a single-payer healthcare system that addresses this epidemic, and every person in the world can be a step closer to living the so-called American Dream. I apologize for the degrading remark about where you may be from, but I moved away from Oswego, NY, to get away from a growing population of stupidity, where it appears that Upstate NY is becoming more conservative. Likely due to educated people moving out of Upstate NY to find career opportunities. Another point: as AI expands, and there are less job opportunities available, the opioid epidemic will likely grow. That is why we need real solutions to root-cause issues. Band-aid fixes are taxing our society.
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    Are you kidding me? How many druggies hang out at the library?? Stop trying to waste taxpayer money.
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    Libraries have become a hotspot for heroine and opioid overdoses???
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    Interesting approach, it might just work. I would like to see the research data used to create this model but I think it is definitely worth exploring. Nice job! For those against this approach, the librarians wouldn't be the first responder. The bill calls for a trained "staff person", like a security guard. And the traffic model supports the location. I would like it better if it was an attached clinic of some kind to limit underage contact.
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    Any professional who comes about a medical problem in their establishment should immediately call 9-1-1. The medical professionals would be able to use the right medicine and know where to put it. CPR and the use of the AED are the most I would trust with any civilian; anything more than that I would trust with medical professionals.
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    Let professionals take care of it not librarians! What a waste of time and money!
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    Mr. Maloney. If you’re going to try to use the dope problem to capitalize politically, then please consider legalizing cannabis. Cannabis has multiple therapeutic uses to combat opiate addiction. Please go to a library and look it up.
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    The more people that are educated and trained to save lives, the better for all of us.
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    What wack a doodle thought up this bit of craziness? Make it legal, give them clean needles. Sell them the drugs they seek. If they can’t afford it...give them a sliding scale discount. If they do it voluntarily, pay for most of the cost of their rehab. But, do not involve libraries and librarians in this drug crisis. As usual, Congress focuses on the symptoms and doesn’t address the root cause. I know it sounds cruel, but I say let these people reap the consequences of their very bad choices. Thinning the herd isn’t a bad thing for society.
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    Who is next ? Middle school teachers and fast food employees?
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    NO. Call 911. It's a job for the professionals. No employee, anywhere, should ever be responsible. .
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    As a librarian, I have no interest in taking this on. There are some things that “other duties as assigned“ does not cover, in my opinion. If they’re looking to give money to libraries, it would be better earmarked to cover unfunded mandates like taking the place of workforce development job seeker assistance. We don’t even have a job center in our county.
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