Hinchey Bill Requiring Narcan in College Housing Signed by Governor

Michelle Hinchey

October 31, 2022

Hinchey Law Will Help SUNY and CUNY Schools Prevent Fatal Student Overdoses, Requires Narcan Supply in College Housing and Student RAs to be Narcan-Trained

KINGSTON, NYSenator Michelle Hinchey today announced the signing of her bill to increase access to life-saving opioid overdose reversal medications on state college campuses in New York. The new law (S3448A) requires SUNY and CUNY schools to maintain a supply of opioid antagonists, like naloxone (known commonly as Narcan), in all college-owned student housing as well as train resident assistants (RAs), who live in student residence halls, on how to administer the overdose antidote.

“Every second counts during an opioid overdose, and I'm incredibly proud to sponsor this legislation to fight the opioid crisis on college campuses,” said Senator Hinchey. “Requiring Narcan in all SUNY and CUNY housing, with trained student RAs who live with their peers and are often in the best position to administer this life-saving medication, will save countless young lives and transform on-campus safety, and I thank Governor Hochul for signing it into law.”

With more New Yorkers dying of drug overdoses in a 12-month period than car accidents, suicides, and homicides combined, Hinchey, who represents Hudson Valley communities with some of the highest rates of opioid overdose deaths in New York State, has been advocating alongside college students for her bill to be signed into law following its unanimous Senate passage back in March.

Janelle Moe, Residential Assistant at University at Albany, said, “Senator Michelle Hinchey’s bill is essential in keeping safety within residential life. As an RA myself, now that I can be trained in the administration of opioid antagonists, I feel more equipped to handle drug-related issues on campus. I will also be more observant of the signs of opioid abuse, and possibly get a resident help before they get to the point of overdose. This bill will change the way RA’s and Residential Life staff respond to this crisis, and result in benevolent change across SUNY campuses.”

Yesim Cinar, Residential Assistant at the University at Albany, said, “Working with the office of Residential Life allows resident assistants to see students at their highest and lowest. This can, unfortunately, be associated with drug abuse. So, ensuring that there are trained resident assistants with access to Narcan can save a number of unprecedented lives. I thank Senator Hinchey for sponsoring this important bill which helps guarantee the safety of residents and students all over New York.”