Memorial for victims of overdose in Lambton

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There will be a memorial for people who have lost loved ones to over dose in Lambton.

Bluewater Health is organizing the event for Tuesday at Centennial Park in Sarnia starting at 6 pm.

Officials want to remember and acknowledge the lives lost to addiction and the impact overdoses have on the community.

Provincial statistics show in 2020, 2,426 people died of a confirmed or suspected opioid-related death in Ontario, a 60 per cent increase over 2019.

In Lambton, public health officials say there was a 48 per cent increase in deaths, from 21 in 2019 to 40 in 2020. That means there were nearly 31 deaths from opioids in Lambton for every 100,000 people in Lambton. Across the province, that number is 16.4 deaths per 100,000.

Mike Gorgey, Manager, Health Promotion at Lambton Public Health, recently said in 2021 the number of people accessing care for overdoses at the emergency department is still higher than the rest of the province. Lambton had 38 opioid related visits to the ER for every 100,000 people compared to 30 per 100,000 across the province in the first six months of 2021.

People attending will be getting purple ribbons and carnations to tie to the railings near the river.