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1 CN BC: Drug Users Need To Be Part Of Solution To Overdose DeathsSat, 17 Jun 2017
Source:Prince George Citizen (CN BC) Author:Bains, Camille Area:British Columbia Lines:101 Added:06/21/2017

VANCOUVER - Drug users are the solution to addressing overdose deaths and providing services to people before they die alone, says a woman who attended a meeting of health professionals in Vancouver trying to develop new strategies to deal with a growing crisis in B.C.

Karen Ward, a board member of the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users, was among about 20 drug users who joined doctors, including the provincial health officer, and the chief coroner at the all-day meeting Friday.

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2 CN AB: PUB LTE: Address Root Causes Of Drug AbuseSat, 10 Jun 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:Kontos, Yulia Area:Alberta Lines:34 Added:06/14/2017

People do not just wake up one day and decide, "I am going to become a drug user."

There are social causes that bring about drug use which need to be dealt with in order to reduce this problem. Drug use is more prevalent among people who are disadvantaged. If we really want to stop this epidemic of opioid overdose, there needs to be public policy in place that will lessen the gap between advantaged and disadvantaged people in order to stop drug use before it starts.

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3 CN BC: Instability Threatens Opioid FixFri, 09 Jun 2017
Source:Metro (Vancouver, CN BC) Author:Ball, David P. Area:British Columbia Lines:66 Added:06/14/2017

Advocate fears lack of action due to power vacuum

A British Columbian mother whose son died from a fentanyl overdose is watching the province's political uncertainty with some unease since the May 9 razor-thin election.

With neither party commanding a majority of seats, government ministries have been treading water - maintaining existing programs but prevented from taking new policy directions.

Leslie McBain's 25-year-old son Jordan died of an opioid overdose in February 2014. She wants whoever takes power to listen to those most directly impacted.

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4 CN ON: LTE: Safe Injection Sites Not The AnswerSat, 10 Jun 2017
Source:Record, The (Kitchener, CN ON) Author:Kuhn, David Area:Ontario Lines:42 Added:06/13/2017

Re: Supervised injection sites to be considered by region - June 7

Whenever I see or hear someone talking about supervised injection sites, I can't help but hear "they're going to do it anyway ..." in the back of my mind, because that's the rationale that people who are for injection sites use. Only, these people usually add something like "at least they'll be safe ..." to further justify their position that this is helping addicts.

Clearly, we have a drug problem in this region - we have a national problem - and I think that local authorities should be working with agencies and groups to help those in our community with substance abuse issues who are battling and struggling with addiction.

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5 CN NF: If You Build It, They Might ComeSat, 10 Jun 2017
Source:Telegram, The (CN NF) Author:Oliver, Kenn Area:Newfoundland Lines:129 Added:06/13/2017

Advocates support idea of supervised injection and consumption site in St. John's, but unsure if drug users would use it

Advocates endorse supervised injection and consumption site in St. John's The number of supervised injection and consumption facilities - often referred to as safe-injection sites - in Canada will soon grow exponentially.

Over the last month, a new facility opened in Surrey, B.C., two were approved for Montreal, three more were approved for Toronto and there's one on the way for Ottawa. There's also talk in the addiction treatment and outreach community of Halifax having its own.

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6CN AB: NDP Says Safe Site For Drug Consumption ComingFri, 09 Jun 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Wood, James Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:06/13/2017

Associate health minister Brandy Payne says she anticipates a supervised consumption site for users of dangerous opioids will be operating in Calgary within months.

Payne also said Thursday she expects there will ultimately be multiple safe-consumption sites in the city to try to combat a rising death toll from fentanyl and other opioids.

A Calgary application for a supervised consumption site is one of five Alberta proposals - the rest are from Edmonton - that have been submitted to Health Canada for an exemption under the federal Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.

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7 US: Drug Trade Rises In Dark Corners Of The InternetSun, 11 Jun 2017
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Popper, Nathaniel Area:United States Lines:232 Added:06/11/2017

Opioid Dealers Embrace the Dark Web to Send Deadly Drugs by Mail

Anonymous online sales are surging, and people are dying. Despite dozens of arrests, new merchants - many based in Asia - quickly pop up.

As the nation's opioid crisis worsens, the authorities are confronting a resurgent, unruly player in the illicit trade of the deadly drugs, one that threatens to be even more formidable than the cartels.

The internet.

In a growing number of arrests and overdoses, law enforcement officials say, the drugs are being bought online. Internet sales have allowed powerful synthetic opioids such as fentanyl - the fastest-growing cause of overdoses nationwide - to reach living rooms in nearly every region of the country, as they arrive in small packages in the mail.

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8 CN AB: Support Key To Drug BattleFri, 02 Jun 2017
Source:Lethbridge Herald (CN AB) Author:Mabell, Dave Area:Alberta Lines:80 Added:06/06/2017

Police chief updates SACPA audience

"Catch and release" may work with fish conservation, but it's no answer to the issues of drug addiction.

That's the word from Rob Davis, Chief of the Lethbridge Police Service. He says repeatedly arresting people addicted to alcohol or drugs and then releasing them - with no assistance offered - is very expensive and it solves nothing.

"That's what we were doing," and so were police services across the nation.

But Lethbridge has a myriad of social service agencies, he told a Southern Alberta Council on Public Affairs audience Thursday, and now police officers make an effort to connect repeat customers with an appropriate service agency as they're released.

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9 CN ON: Ottawa Approves 3 Toronto Supervised-Injection SitesSat, 03 Jun 2017
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Woo, Andrea Area:Ontario Lines:103 Added:06/06/2017

The federal government has approved three supervised-injection sites for Toronto, further expanding a contentious harm reduction service in its latest effort to counter a surging number of overdose deaths in Canada.

Illicit fentanyl and chemically similar drugs have caused fatal overdoses to skyrocket. Opioid overdoses in Ontario increased 11 per cent in the first half of 2016 compared with the same period the year before, B.C. is on pace to have 1,400 deaths this year, and fentanyl-related fatalities in Alberta in the first quarter of 2017 are 60 per cent higher than in the same period last year.

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10CN AB: Column: Alberta Takes Important Step In Fight To Stop OpioidThu, 01 Jun 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Braid, Don Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:06/06/2017

There, the NDP finally said it. Alberta's fentanyl deaths are an "emergency."

That's pretty obvious after 113 fatalities already in the first three months of this year, after 363 in 2016. Overdoses now kill more people in Alberta than traffic crashes and homicides combined.

In 2011, there were only six deaths from this scourge. Opioids have become an undeniable public emergency.

It's also a suburban problem, not just a blight on the inner city. Last year, 80 per cent of Calgary deaths were outside the city core.

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11 Canada: Mayors Want Pot CashSat, 03 Jun 2017
Source:Lethbridge Herald (CN AB)          Area:Canada Lines:93 Added:06/06/2017

Cities say money needed to help with costs of enforcement

The mayors of Canada's biggest cities say they need a slice of the tax windfall from legal marijuana to cover what they describe as significant costs associated with enforcing a signature initiative from the federal Liberals.

They raised their concerns with cabinet ministers this week, pressing the case that some tax revenues from sale of the drug must filter down to cover costs associated with land-use issues, business licensing applications and enforcement once the purchase, sale and recreational use of the drug is no longer illegal.

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12 CN ON: Vecchio To Hold Town Hall Meeting On Marijuana LegislationTue, 30 May 2017
Source:St. Thomas Times-Journal (CN ON) Author:Broadley, Laura Area:Ontario Lines:90 Added:05/30/2017

The Liberals' promise to legalize marijuana has its champions and its critics. No matter where you fall on the spectrum, Karen Vecchio, MP for Elgin-Middlesex-London, wants to hear from you.

"I really want to hear from the public. I know there's lots of people who are supportive of this, that think that it's been long time coming. There are other people who have some great concerns with it. And I want to make sure we hear from the right people," Vecchio said.

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13CN BC: OPED: Our Approach To Opioid Addiction Isn't WorkingFri, 26 May 2017
Source:Province, The (CN BC) Author:Oviedo-Joekes, Eugenia Area:British Columbia Lines:Excerpt Added:05/29/2017

"Yes, and how many deaths will it take till he knows, That too many people have died?" - Bob Dylan, Blowin' in the Wind

Beginning in 1993, Justice Horace Krever led a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the tainted-blood scandal in Canada. Inquiries were held in other countries. One of the key questions was why people with hemophilia were forced to continue to inject blood products that were not screened for HIV, when newer and safer products were already available.

Criminal charges were laid in a number of settings. The Canadian Red Cross pleaded guilty to the crime of distributing a contaminated drug and made a large donation in exchange for six criminal charges being dropped.

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14 CN BC: Health Canada OKs Consumption SitesMon, 29 May 2017
Source:Metro (Vancouver, CN BC) Author:Denis, Jen St. Area:British Columbia Lines:58 Added:05/29/2017

Vancouver will get one new site, while Surrey gets two

Health Canada is allowing three additional supervised drug consumption sites to operate in the Lower Mainland - two in Surrey and one in Vancouver.

The move fulfils a promise from Jane Philpott, Canada's federal health minister, to support and expedite applications to open more of the sites. At supervised drug consumption sites, nurses are present as people take illicit drugs and can assist in case of an overdose as well as connect people to other health or social services. Insite at 139 E. Hastings St., operated by Vancouver Coastal Health and the Portland Hotel Society, opened in 2003, while a supervised consumption site at Vancouver's Dr. Peter Centre has operated since 2002.

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15CN BC: Canada Urged To Set Up More Drug ClinicsSun, 28 May 2017
Source:Province, The (CN BC) Author:Bains, Camille Area:British Columbia Lines:Excerpt Added:05/28/2017

European experts say facilities like Vancouver's Crosstown can save lives, money in battling opioid crisis

Addiction experts from five European countries say their experience with prescription heroin programs have provided overwhelming evidence to suggest Canada should expand its one clinic to tackle the deadly opioid crisis.

Researchers from the Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Canada held a symposium in Vancouver on Friday to share lessons they've learned from multiple clinical trials and years of treatment.

Wim van den Brink of the Netherlands told a news conference that some European programs started as a way to deal with the public nuisance of drug use but the medical health benefits improved people's quality of life and saved money in the criminal justice system.

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16 Canada: Supervised-Injection Sites ExpandedSat, 27 May 2017
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Woo, Andrea Area:Canada Lines:102 Added:05/27/2017

Ottawa broadens overdose-prevention program, approving three more locations for Vancouver region, one for Montreal

The federal government has approved four more supervised-injection sites - three in the Vancouver region and one in Montreal - in its latest effort to combat an escalating overdose crisis across the country.

The new round of approvals brings the number of federally sanctioned sites to nine, significantly expanding what was once a radical intervention limited to a single location in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside. Such facilities, run by local health agencies, allow users to consume illicit drugs in the presence of health workers who can intervene in the event of an overdose.

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17Canada: Robertson, Other Mayors Urge Feds To Take Lead On OverdoseFri, 26 May 2017
Source:Province, The (CN BC) Author:Bains, Camille Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:05/26/2017

Mayors across Canada are calling for federal leadership on the "national emergency" of overdoses by ensuring provinces provide timely access to addiction treatment and by launching public education campaigns.

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson, who heads a task force of the big city mayors caucus on the opioid crisis, said he and his counterparts in 12 other cities agree the situation is so dire that Ottawa must take a leadership role if jurisdictions are not moving fast enough to save lives.

Federal Health Minister Jane Philpott said last month she's frustrated with provinces and territories that have not provided her with information on overdose deaths despite repeated requests.

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18 CN AB: Oped: Alberta Not Getting The Full Picture On OpioidsSat, 20 May 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Swann, David Area:Alberta Lines:91 Added:05/24/2017

By any objective measure, the opiate crisis has affected British Columbia far more severely than Alberta.

Both legal and illegal opiate use is more prevalent, and it was the first province to see this unprecedented number of deaths due to overdoses of fentanyl and other opiates.

B.C.'s response has been robust.

The declaration of a public health state of emergency led to resources being mobilized across government departments and between all stakeholders in a co-ordinated plan.

Their Provincial Health Officer reports monthly on the efforts to combat the crisis, and the province has embraced early harm reduction measures such as naloxone kits and supervised injection sites.

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19 Canada: Streamlined Injection-Site Conditions Become LawFri, 19 May 2017
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Woo, Andrea Area:Canada Lines:94 Added:05/24/2017

A piece of legislation that makes it easier to open supervised injection sites has become law, replacing Harper-era regulations that effectively stalled the harm reduction service as overdose deaths climbed.

Under Bill C-37, which received royal assent on Thursday, agencies wanting to open a supervised-injection site must meet five streamlined conditions, down from 26 under the previous Respect for Communities Act.

The Liberal government tabled the bill in December. It received final approval on Wednesday, with minor amendments.

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20CN BC: Column: Beware Of 'Evidence-Based' Policy PositionsWed, 17 May 2017
Source:Province, The (CN BC) Author:Clark, Gordon Area:British Columbia Lines:Excerpt Added:05/20/2017

A term we hear with increasing frequency is the claim that we need "evidence-based policy" on this or that public issue. With the possible new importance of the B.C. Green party - we'll know more after the final election count on May 24 - you'll be hearing the phrase a lot more as the Greens love the term like yogis love mantras.

"Evidence-based policy" started out as a medical term. Doctors wanted evidence on the effectiveness of a treatment before using it. It is the empirical method in action. Constant research examines how patients fare after various procedures, surgeries or drug treatments so doctors can know which treatments are best.

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