Pubdate: Fri, 30 Sep 2005
Source: Esquimalt News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2005 Esquimalt News
Author: Tom Fletcher
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Canada)
Bookmark: (Methamphetamine - Canada)


Delegates started off the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention
Wednesday with a call for provincial help to deal with their two main
community drug problems, crystal meth addiction and marijuana grow

Led by delegates from Vancouver Island, the convention unanimously
endorsed a resolution calling for increased education about the
hazards of methamphetamine use and on-demand detox beds for addicts
who are seeking help to get off the drug

Esquimalt councillor Ruth Lane told delegates about a recent tour of
Victoria streets with B.C. Solicitor-General John Les, in which they
met young people using meth

"One hundred per cent of those kids said, 'get me off this drug, this
poison'," she said

The problem is the Island has only five beds for youth drug detox

Saanich Coun. Bob Gillespie said education is needed in schools to
reach the preteens who are now being exposed to the drug and don't
understand its health hazards

"It's the 13, 14, 15-year-old boys and girls being open on the street
with sales," he said. "Mentally they can be ruined for life.

A delegate from the District of Kent gave an example of a "catch and
release" effect of law enforcement. A meth addict broke into his
mother's home, she called 9-1-1, but police released him. He broke in
again and cut himself, threatening suicide, but he wasn't held for
medical reasons, and broke in a third time. "She eventually had to
flee the home.

The UBCM also endorsed resolutions from Kelowna and Abbotsford aimed
at eliminating residential grow operations. Kelowna called for a
provincially funded pilot project in Abbotsford and Surrey to be
extended provincewide.
- ---
MAP posted-by: Larry Seguin