Pubdate: Thu, 24 May 2001
Source: Aldergrove Star (CN BC)
Copyright: 2001, Central Fraser Valley Star Publishing Ltd.


For the first time in several decades, Members of Parliament from all 
political parties will be studying the effects of the non-medical use of 
drugs in Canada.

A Canadian Alliance supply day motion was unanimously supported May 17 in 
the House of Commons, which will see the establishment of a committee that 
will examine and make recommendations on how the federal government can 
act, alone or with various other levels of government, to reduce this 
growing problem.

Opposition Solicitor General critic and Langley-Abbotsford MP Randy White, 
who brought forward the motion, has been fighting for the past eight years 
to bring this issue forward on behalf of police, parents and everyone 
concerned about drugs in our society.

"It is time we organized ourselves to go across the country to small towns, 
villages and cities, and here in the House of Commons, to get people 
together to assess how difficult the situation is today."

White says the problems with illicit drugs range from health implications 
to issues in the area of the justice system, in regards to sentencing and 
law enforcement.

"There are a lot of things to look at in this committee. We need to examine 
these issues on the streets. Forget the bureaucrats who sit in high 
buildings. Let's get down on the streets and figure out how to fix this thing."

The members of this special all-party committee are expected to be 
announced by the beginning of June, with the final report expected to be 
presented to the House no later than November 2002.

"This is just the beginning of one of the most important tasks members of 
this House will undertake in this Parliament," said White. "I would like to 
thank all those people who have brought their concerns forward on this 
issue - you will now have a voice for change. I hope they will continue to 
write to the members of this committee and press for action on this issue. 
On behalf of our children and those who are addicted, I am pleased that we 
are taking action and doing something positive."
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MAP posted-by: Terry Liittschwager