Letter: Drugs in the library

Tuesday, January 09, 2018
Drugs in the library

According to an article by Anne Ford in the June 21 issue of American Libraries Magazine, public libraries across America are experiencing the ill effects of the opioid epidemic. Many have resorted to stocking Narcan, and training staff on how to administer it. In fact, this same ALM article details staff at the Humboldt County Public Library in Eureka, Calif., (pop. 27,000), using Narcan to save the life of a “sleeper.” That is, a patron staff initially thought was sleeping but was actually overdosing on opioids – caught in nick of time.

Like other libraries in the United States, the Concord Public Library has its share of sleepers. The CPL also has its share of drug activity. In addition to finding evidence of its aftermath in the bathroom, I have witnessed the undeniable likelihood of drug activity in real time at the CPL.

Most of the patrons nodded off are actually sleeping, of course, but when a known drug dealer (police log all-star) wakes up a sleeping patron to expedite a drug deal in the CPL men’s room, well, it’s a bad combo. I have alerted the director to my observations, several times, yet the sleepers kept on sleeping and the dealers kept on dealing.

The Concord Public Library administration needs to take the opioid problem more seriously, instead of wasting time and energy on shooting the messenger. The ostrich approach isn’t going to make opioids go away. Not in Eureka, and not in the Concord Public Library.