Riverside Police Chief Thomas Weitzel announced that a generous resident donated substantial funds towards the Riverside Police Department's Narcan program.
This straight cash donation is for the continued operation of the overall program and refunding of Narcan to be carried by police officers in their vehicles. Additionally, the police department received grant funding for training, enhanced devices, and technical assistance for the Narcan program. The grant for this portion is through the Cook County Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (CCDHSEM).
Chief Weitzel stated, “I’m honored that a very generous resident made a large donation to the police department's Narcan fund so we can continue to provide these lifesaving services to our residents and visitors”. The Riverside resident who donated the funds told Chief Weitzel he was concerned in regard to comments in 2017 that the police department should not carry Narcan and would be wasting Village funds. He and his wife then donated $1,000 towards this program so the funds would not come out of the Village budget. I’m so thankful that we have generous and compassionate residents such as the husband and wife team that donated directly to the police department. I’m also honored that the Cook County Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management awarded us funding for the training, equipment, and technical assistance. I'm very pleased with our partnership with the Cook County Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management”.
Weitzel said he wants residents to know that as long as he is the chief of police his officers will carry Narcan on their duty belt or in their squads 24/7 in order to serve our citizens in a life-saving and compassionate manner. He said it is essential when the police are, at times, on scene before paramedics arrive, that officers have these tools available to reverse the effects of heroin or opioid overdose.