opioids

For one day this month, New Jersey residents will be able to walk into dozens of participating pharmacies across the state and obtain the overdose-reversing drug naloxone free of charge.

The June 18 event is the latest salvo in the ongoing fight against the opioid crisis in New Jersey, which saw more than 3,100 drug-overdose deaths in 2018.

Overdose-prevention advocates praised the move by Gov. Phil Murphy’s administration, saying the life-saving treatment for opioid overdoses needs to be more widely available.

New Jersey has filed a civil lawsuit against several members of the high-profile family behind Purdue Pharma, the company that created the opioid painkiller OxyContin, claiming they deceptively marketed their drugs to turn a profit.

State Attorney General Gurbir Grewal said the eight Sackler family members named in the suit, all of whom sat on the company’s board, downplayed the risks associated with opioids and caused countless patients to become dependent.

Tom Brady. NyQuil. Blue Magic.

New Jersey law enforcement authorities are urging heroin users to ditch their drugs if they see any packages stamped with these logos.

“Please, please, stay away from it. Your next fix could very likely be your last,” said Attorney General Gurbir Grewal at a Thursday press conference.

The unusual warning followed what authorities said was a major bust of a heroin production facility at a luxury apartment in Harrison in North Jersey.

Officials estimated it was churning out 15,000 doses of fentanyl-laced heroin every day.