Pubdate: Wed, 28 Dec 2016
Source: Victoria Times-Colonist (CN BC)
Copyright: 2016 Times Colonist
Author: Jeff Kuryk
Page: A11


Re: "Teen in suspected drug death 'honour student led astray,' " Dec. 
27. As a retired psychologist, I'm trying to understand why so far this 
year about 755 human beings have died of overdoses in B.C.

I've observed that Grade "A" addicts live only to consume drugs such
as fentanyl-laced heroin regardless of whether it might kill them.
Many pay drug dealers with the proceeds of crime and leave a swath of
victims, including those who love them, in their wake. Eventually,
their self-destructive antics wear out those charged to help them,
such as police, firefighters, paramedics, hospital staff, social
workers and counsellors who eventually succumb to compassion fatigue.
Though a courageous step, safe-injection sites appear to simply
maintain this grisly status quo.

In an effort to address this perpetual social train wreck, I want the
scientific community to tell those of us who care: What would happen
if prescription heroin were available to these lost souls? Would fewer
people die? Would hospital visits decline? Would drug-related crimes
fall and fewer be sent to jail? Would more or fewer people take up the
habit? Would drug dealers go out of business?

Without this information at hand, we can't address this debacle
head-on. Or perhaps I'm naive and "culling the herd" with fentanyl is
covertly considered OK.

Jeff Kuryk

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