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Overdose Immunity Bill Advances

Ed Williams

The New Mexico Senate approved a bill Monday that provides more legal protection to people calling 911 to report a drug overdose. Lawmakers hope the bill will encourage more people to call for help.

New Mexico was the first state in the country to enact a so-called 911 Good Samaritan Law back in 2007. The new measure expands protections to include people who violate parole or a restraining order, or have a warrant out for their arrest.

Senator Richard Martinez sponsored the measure and said on the senate floor this week that he’d heard reports of people getting prosecuted for those reasons after calling to report an overdose.

The proposal also expands protections to people who call 911 to report an alcohol overdose.

It now heads to the House.

Ed Williams came to KUNM in 2014 by way of Carbondale, Colorado, where he worked as a public radio reporter covering environmental issues. Originally from Austin, Texas, Ed has reported on environmental, social justice, immigration and Native American issues in the U.S. and Latin America for the Austin American-Statesman, Z Magazine, NPR’s Latino USA and others. In his spare time, look for Ed riding his mountain bike in the Sandias or sparring on the jiu-jitsu mat.
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