ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. – After seeing someone struggle from a drug overdose on the sidewalk in front of one of his Cedar Market stores, Issa Nammour decided to take decisive action. “I felt helpless,” he said. “I had to do something about it.”
The retailer became trained in how to administer naloxone, an antidote to an opioid overdose, the Press of Atlantic City reports. Now at several Cedar Market locations, he stocks a pouch with a pair of latex gloves, a rescue breathing mouthpiece and Narcan nasal spray behind the counter. “The kit we have here, I got a few of them,” Nammour said. “It will slowly save a person’s life.”
In 2016, more than 2,200 New Jersey residents died from an overdose, up 40% from 2015, according to the Office of the State Medical Examiner. Nammour took part of the Atlantic County Alliance’s “Just in Case” awareness campaign, which trains locals in how to administer naloxone to someone suffering from a drug overdose.
Nammour also made sure his employees are trained to administer the antidote. While the kits have been unused for now, Nammour encourages his fellow convenience store operators to receive similar training. “It’s really satisfying to know that you have the ability to save someone’s life,” he said. “We have to really get ahead of (the drug epidemic).”