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'How many more people have to die?': Louisville group works to end drug overdoses in Kentucky

Their plan includes funding for housing, better access to services and treatment and stopping the criminalization of drug use.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Members of Vocal Kentucky gathered at Jefferson Square Park Wednesday to share their "roadmap to ending drug overdoses."

Their plan includes funding for housing, better access to services and treatment and stopping the criminalization of drug use.

"When you provide people the tools, the education, the support and environment to be able to take care of themselves, they do," member Jennifer Twyman said.

According to a report from the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy, 2,250 people died from drug overdoses in 2021 in the commonwealth. One inmate at Louisville Metro Correction also died from a suspected fentanyl overdose in July.

"Why did the numbers go up? Why did the overdosing numbers go up when we have access? Why are children overdosing and we're not talking about," another member, Shreeta Waldon, said.

Members of Vocal Kentucky said they can't watch another person die from drug abuse. The group's director, Shameka Parrish-Wright, said she is going to meet with Mayor Greg Fischer Thursday to create a plan to end overdosing in the city.

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