St. Louis has a new law meant to save lives among overdose victims, and a state representative wants Missouri to be next.
Under the new law anyone in St. Louis who calls 911 to report an overdose victim will be protected from prosecution for possessing or distributing small amounts of a drug.
Representative Steve Lynch (R-Waynesville) was there when Mayor Francis Slay signed the bill. Lynch has sponsored such a law in the state House and will keep proposing the idea.
“I wasn’t very successful in getting it very far through again this year, but I am very uplifted to know that St. Louis has passed an ordinance for the 911 Good Samaritan bill,” said Lynch. “If someone overdoses, even though I may be under the influence or I have a small amount – a personal use amount of heroin or drugs there – that I could call for medical emergency services and I wouldn’t’ be prosecuted as a result of that.”
Lynch and other backers of the concept say it will save lives.
“Addicts are scared to death to call and what they’re doing is dumping bodies, or they’re just leaving them wherever they’re at,” Lynch told Missourinet.
St. Louis’ new law is thought to be the first of its kind in the nation. It does not protect those with weapons, large amounts of drugs, or who operate drug houses.