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Thank you to our partners at Save the Michaels of the World for managing this harm reduction vending machine in Kenmore, NY. This is MATTERS’ fourth vending machine to go live out of the 15 total that are coming to New York State this year. Click here to find a vending machine near you.

KENMORE, NY (WKBW) — There is a new way of fighting the drug overdose epidemic to save lives. A Narcan vending machine is now installed outside the Kenmore Fire Department.

“And down it comes,” declared Matt Thompson as he removed a Narcan box from a vending machine.

A life-lifesaving box of Narcan is now free of charge from the vending machine outside the Kenmore Fire Department on Nash Road in the Village of Kenmore.

As Thompson demonstrated how easy it is to use this machine, he told me how Narcan saved his life after he became addicted to opiates while hospitalized for Crohn’s Disease.

“And one night, it was March 4, 2018, I overdosed and one of the first things that had to happen was Narcan. It’s a lifesaver,” explained Thompson.

Avi Israel, president & founder of Save the Michaels of the World, lost his son to addiction similar to Thompson’s story. That’s why he’s committed to setting up these vending machines.

“So any way that we could give a chance for people to be able to get this, it’s a plus. It’s going to save lives,” Israel noted.

The goal is to get more of these Narcan vending machines in other parts of our region where there are some very high rates of overdoses.

“Some of the communities that we want to put machines, and the first thing that you hear is – ‘well we don’t want those kinds of people to come down’. Those kinds of people are your neighbors. Could be your kid or family member, it could be the person that just across the street from you. It could be anybody,” replied Israel.

“If somebody’s not breathing, we’ve lost the chance to help them,” Jennifer Garrgian responded.

Garrigan is with the Erie County Health Department. She says the County’s Opiate Task Force continues working to place Narcan at sites across the county, especially as our region has become a major epicenter for fentanyl-laced drugs.

Access life-saving supplies quickly and easily.