Drugs

Two people overdosed on opioids while in shelters in Palm Beach County during Hurricane Irma, officials said.

Drug overdoses now kill more Americans than car accidents or gun violence.

Thursday is International Overdose Awareness Day and, to mark the occasion, advocates and officials from Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade Counties will gather on the Florida Atlantic University campus in Boca Raton to call for greater federal action to end the United States’s epidemic of addiction and overdose deaths.

Rallies will be held in cities around the country.

Maureen Kielian is a parent advocate from Fort Lauderdale who helped organize the event.

The Collier County Sheriff’s Office is using software to map real-time heroin overdoses.

State legislators came to Palm Beach County Tuesday to discuss the opioid crisis.

Photo: STEPHANIE COLOMBINI/WUSF

The opioid crisis has claimed victims—and lives—across Florida, from Miami to Manatee County. But reporter Stephanie Colombini with WUSF in Tampa tracked another way the deadly addictive painkillers are changing the lives of Floridians: she found a "skyrocketing" number of children being removed from their homes and placed in foster care in Sarasota and Manatee Counties is linked with the opioid epidemic.

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