Hawaiʻi government leaders consider Narcan bills after mass Waikīkī fentanyl overdose
The Honolulu City Council will be hearing Bill 28, relating to Naloxone, for second reading on Wednesday. The bill, introduced by Council member Tyler Dos Santos-Tam, requires bars, nightclubs, and other high-risk venues to maintain doses of naloxone, the opioid reversal medication.
The bill will be heard two days after a mass fentanyl overdose in a Waikīkī hotel resulted in two deaths and three hospitalizations.
Area state Representative Adrian Tam said the incident highlights the national opioid epidemic and is urging the governor to sign a separate piece of legislation, Senate Bill 671, which seeks to decriminalize fentanyl test strips. He said this crucial step enables authorities to address substance use disorders as a matter of public health rather than as a crime.
“What happened in Waikīkī is a tragedy. It serves as another reminder that we need to use every tool at our disposal to prevent overdoses. Narcan is one of those tools,” said Council member Dos Santos-Tam. “Bill 28 is about keeping the public safe – it’s about taking action on this horrible epidemic.”
Bill 28 will be heard for second reading on Wednesday, June 7. If passed, it will return to the committee on Housing, Sustainability, and Health, whose next meeting is on Wednesday, June 21. It could pass out of the full City Council on Wednesday, July 12.
Dos Santos-Tam represents City Council District 6, which spans from Kakaʻako to Kalihi, and includes portions of Kakaʻako, Chinatown, Downtown, Punchbowl, Papakōlea, Pauoa Valley, Nu‘uanu, Iwilei, Liliha, ‘Ālewa Heights, Kalihi and Kalihi Valley.