WATERLOO REGION - Sally has been taking drugs since her mother
introduced her to them when she was 14.
Today, the 26-year-old Kitchener woman is on methadone to curb her
But Sally, not her real name, still does illicit drugs like crystal
Her drug of choice is crack but last summer while looking for a hit,
she bought a "point" of fentanyl and injected it (a point is one-tenth
of a gram). She doesn't want to do it again but fears it could be
laced in the drugs she usually buys.
[continues 1298 words]
WATERLOO REGION - Five years ago, local paramedics responded to one
opioid overdose a week.
Now the rate is almost two overdoses every day.
"Where does it end?" says Robert Crossan, deputy chief of the Region
of Waterloo Paramedic Services.
The drug at the core of the crisis is fentanyl - a painkiller 80 times
stronger than morphine.
It's a pain medication prescribed and taken by patients through
But 'bootleg' fentanyl is coming in from China, and trace amounts - as
small as grains of salt - are being mixed with heroin and cocaine sold
on the streets.
[continues 1086 words]
Penticton's mayor is applauding a recent B.C. Supreme Court decision
that ruled local governments do indeed have the right to regulate
medical marijuana dispensaries. "The judge clearly stated that even
though the use of marijuana is federally regulated, the federal law
does not authorize access to medical marijuana from dispensaries and
municipalities are not precluded from putting in regulations to
control them," Andrew Jakubeit said in a statement.
"This decision is welcomed as it provides further clarity on our
rights and obligations to control dispensaries and gives added
strength to our enforcement policy."
[continues 258 words]
Ends always justify the means for those striving to do good, no matter
the cost to life, liberty and truth.
The truth about hard drugs, such as heroin, is blunt - it destroys
lives and it kills. With each injection, intravenous drug users on the
Downtown Eastside of Vancouver are slowly, sometimes quickly, killing
themselves. I believe these people are well aware of this fact. How
could they not? The risk of death is an ever-present danger that is
impossible for any hard-drug user to ignore, let alone plead ignorance.
[continues 357 words]
Last month, my colleague Laurie P. died of overdose, one of 116 fatal
ODs in B.C. in January. She was a harm reduction activist and had a
graceful, inclusive style of community organizing.
We've been here before.
During prohibition, people got sick and died from potent or
contaminated bootlegged booze. Organized crime flourished. Then,
liquor was legalized again.
It's time to do the same with hard drugs.
In 2001, Portugal decriminalized possession of all drugs. Overdose
deaths and HIV transmission rates fell. Drug use is down and treatment
is up. Trafficking remains illegal but users get health services, not
[continues 348 words]
The mother of a teenage girl who was subjected to a strip search at
l'Ecole secondaire de Neufchatel has dropped a lawsuit requesting
damages of $383,000 against the Quebec City school board and the
A settlement was reached between the parties early this month, Le
Soleil reports. The civil court case was scheduled to begin Feb. 20
before Judge Daniel Dumais of the Superior Court.
The girl's mother obtained the consent of the school board to drop the
case without being subjected to any fees after two years and multiple
judiciary procedures. The lawyers of both parties confirmed the
settlement, but were unwilling to provide reasons.
[continues 65 words]
In light of the recent death of popular Kanata teenager Chloe Kotval
from an apparent drug overdose, and warnings from Ottawa police and
Ottawa Public Health about counterfeit prescription drugs they suspect
have been the cause of "recent life-threatening overdoses" in the
city, on Saturday, concerned father Sean O'Leary posted an emotional
Facebook message about teen drug overdoses in Kanata.
Below is the text of his message:
To all whom are concerned, As many if not all of you are aware from
news reports a beautiful 14-year-old Kanata girl passed away this week
as a result of a drug overdose.
[continues 830 words]
Last week we made headlines with a record drug bust after more than
$1.2 million in drugs, cash, weapons, drug manufacturing equipment and
vehicles were seized by the Lethbridge members of the Alberta Law
Enforcement Response Team.
I commend the members of the LPS and the RCMP who make up the
integrated Lethbridge team for their great work.
In the news conference, I was asked how this seizure impacts the city.
Beyond preventing the obvious drug use, sales and potential
fatalities, I mentioned how drugs and addictions are related to
property crimes. I know many citizens have been victims of car
prowling and residential break-ins to their homes, garages and sheds.
Many businesses have also been hit by very organized thieves as was
clear when a car dealership had dozens of wheels and rims stolen from
new cars on their lot not too long ago.
[continues 664 words]
The members of the Middlesex-London Board of Health endorsed Thursday
evening a motion to take the "next steps" to set up a
supervised-injection site for drug users in London.
That essentially means determining what the method will be for moving
forward with the project. As part of that, there will be a public
consultation before setting up any such site, including talking to the
people in the chosen neighbourhood, including residents and business.
The first part of the three-pronged motion covered accepting a
feasibility study. Dr. Gayanne Hovhannisyan, the acting medical
officer of health, led the discussion.
[continues 68 words]
Non-profit group takes Victoria patients to get same-day methadone
A Victoria non-profit group has started a service to drive people to
Nanaimo to get methadone and suboxone prescriptions because the wait
time to see a doctor is much shorter.
"A lot of clients would say: 'I can't see a doctor for weeks.' So when
this new clinic opened in Nanaimo and said they were taking clients,
we saw an opportunity," said Lucy Hagos, operations manager at the
Daily Dose Society, which operates the Wheels for Recovery program.
[continues 620 words]
We would like to respond to a recent article (Penticton Western News,
Feb. 8, Some dispensaries'thumbing their noses' at the city rules)
which Mayor Andrew Jakubeit said we are 'thumbing our nose' at the
city by operating without a business license.
Firstly, we can appreciate the concerns of citizens who are unfamiliar
with the medical benefits of cannabis products and the service that a
professional dispensary provides. This is a new type of business for
many communities and there are still old perceptions that all users
are hippies and kids just getting high. The majority of our customers
are adults over the age of 50 who are seeking help with medical issues
such as arthritis, anxiety, insomnia, MS, glaucoma, seizures and pain
[continues 386 words]
A B.C. Supreme Court justice freed an accused cocaine trafficker
Friday because there was no sheriff to lead the man from a cell in the
Victoria courthouse to the courtroom.
The decision highlighted an ongoing sheriff shortage that has closed
courtrooms, delayed trials and tossed cases out of court around B.C.
The Victoria courthouse is particularly hard hit.
Justice Robert Johnston blamed the situation on "a lack of provincial
will to provide the necessary resources," as he stayed a charge of
possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking against Richard
[continues 390 words]
After decrying Ottawa's "divide and conquer" approach to health-care
agreements, British Columbia signed its own side deal on Friday - to
get extra cash for the drug-overdose crisis.
B.C. had been one of the most vocal critics of Ottawa's strategy to
pick off provinces one by one with special agreements, rather than
negotiate across-the-board health transfers with all the provinces.
But B.C. officials said Friday they eventually decided to settle the
feud because they wanted to present a united Canadian front in the
softwood lumber trade dispute with the U.S.
[continues 189 words]
If governments were really providing an urgent response to the
fentanyl crisis, Correne Antrobus wouldn't be prowling Victoria's
streets looking for a drug dealer to sell her daughter methadone.
Antrobus shared her story in the Times Colonist this week. Her
daughter is addicted to opiates, but wants to quit. When she asked her
family for help, they sought medical support and a quick start on
legal methadone that would stabilize her addiction, keep her safe and
allow her to seek treatment.
[continues 444 words]
Inspired by Canada's finest storyteller, Moriarty shares a tale from
his misspent youth
As a tribute to Stuart McLean, Canada's finest storyteller who passed
away Wednesday, I'd like to tell you a story about the time, in a whim
of desperation, I considered killing Moses, the family dog.
I was 16 the night my best friends Drew and Larry came to my house to
smoke some marijuana.
The three of us were going to a dance that night. My home seemed like
a safe place to toke before heading off to the gymnasium at Lord Byng
Secondary, where, if fortune smiled upon me this evening, I would slow
dance with the golden Ilona through the entirety of Jethro Tull's
Thick As A Brick.
[continues 708 words]
He's done four rotations helping law enforcement agencies combat the
international drug trade in the eastern Pacific Ocean.
On Thursday, navy Lt.-Cmdr. Lucas Kenward was in Saskatoon to speak
with local police and reservists about Canada's role in the fight.
"One of the key messages that I bring to police services is that the
mission that we're doing ... while it is displaced by some 5,000 miles
from here, it does have a direct impact," he said.
[continues 278 words]
Drug addicts need our care and compassion - not incarceration - writes
The Edmonton Police Service recently published its organizational
position on supervised injection sites, which calls for supervised
injection sites to be more than designated physical spaces where
addicts can consume illegal drugs.
In addition to the necessary basic human requirements of shelter and
security, the sites also need to provide a complete slate of support
services for drug addicts - from emergency medical care to assistance
with food, medication and mental health issues - to name a few.
[continues 483 words]
Man, 28, died after being told downtown drop-in centre had no space
for him to sleep
The fatal overdose of a 28-year-old man, who left a downtown drop-in
centre he frequented after being told there was no room for him to
sleep, has left his friends and community reeling and searching for
The man, whom the Star is not identifying at this time without his
family's permission, often stayed at the St. Felix Centre, a
neighbourhood hub on Augusta Ave. where men and women can shower,
enjoy meals, receive counselling and use computers.
[continues 660 words]
On Tuesday (February 21), exactly 914 feathers will hang from the
trees in Oppenheimer Park.
They will symbolize the 914 people who died of an illicit-drug
overdose in B.C. in 2016. The feathers will be carved out of wood and
as many as possible will bear the name of somebody who died after
The Vancouver demonstration is part of a national day of action that
is so far planned for seven cities across Canada. In B.C., events are
also planned for Victoria and Nanaimo.
[continues 559 words]
IHA saw largest increase in rate of drug overdose deaths from 2015 to
2016, a 145 per cent jump, from 64 to 158 deaths
Kelowna had the third highest number of illicit drug overdose deaths
among B.C. cities last month.
In January, there were eight drug overdose deaths in Kelowna, 10
deaths in the Okanagan and 18 deaths across Interior Health, according
to a BC Coroners Service report released Friday.
The top two cities for drug overdose deaths in January were Vancouver
with 45 deaths and Surrey with nine.
[continues 326 words]
Life-saving overdose antidote kits not available on Sundays, public
The city will put off a request to distribute more life-saving
anti-overdose kits until it finds out whether the provincial or
federal governments will cover the cost.
The city's public health department requested extra cash in 2017 to
expand distribution of naloxone, a life-saving medicine that reverses
the effects of overdose on opioid drugs like heroin and fentanyl.
The city already hands out kits on request and via the needle exchange
van, which travels around Hamilton during the week and on Saturdays
handing out clean needles.
[continues 354 words]
WATERLOO REGION - A group of parents sit around a small table. Their
eyes are red from crying.
Nearby are framed photos of the children they have lost to drug
overdoses. Among them are Iain Goddard, Brittany Cobbing and Austin
Janice Walsh-Goddard didn't even know what fentanyl was when she heard
it killed her son.
Iain Goddard died last May while Janice was in England on vacation.
She got the call on the last day of her weeklong trip.
[continues 1488 words]
Every one of the 26 people who overdosed on illicit drugs at Our Place
in January survived, some treated with oxygen alone to keep them breathing.
As a result, they did not join the 116 people who died of drug
overdoses in B.C. last month.
The 18 deaths recorded on Vancouver Island matched the high seen in
November, and was up two from December, according to a report from the
B.C. Coroners Service. Overall numbers in B.C. were down from a record
high of 142 in December.
[continues 387 words]
Vancouver World kept up steady stream of stories on evil of
The evil of drugs has been a recurring theme for Vancouver newspapers
since the city was founded in 1886. But few papers went as far as the
Vancouver World's anti-dope campaign in January and February of 1922.
The tone of the campaign is summed up in an illustration by cartoonist
Ernest LeMessurier on Feb. 18. A sharply dressed "dope trafficker"
cowers before a cat o' nine tails whip being wielded by an arm
labelled "public indignation." The title of the illustration is "The
[continues 618 words]
The arrests on Thursday of a dozen people in Ottawa believed to be
involved in the trafficking of illicit opioids, coupled with the spike
in recent years of drug overdose deaths in this city, underscores the
need for greater public awareness, says Ottawa Public Health's manager
of clinical programs.
"We follow what's happening across Canada - in Vancouver and Alberta -
where they're seeing large increases in people dying from opioid
overdoses," Andrew Hendriks said.
In Ottawa in 2015, there were 48 deaths from unintentional drug
overdoses, a jump of 32 per cent over the previous year (the rest of
Ontario saw just a six-per-cent increase in the same period). Of the
48 Ottawa deaths, 29 were the result of opioid use, of which 14 were
attributable to fentanyl.
[continues 609 words]
Police cite parents' concerns over health and safety
Nanaimo Mounties have closed a marijuana dispensary that opened next
door to a children's daycare centre.
Leaf Labs Medical Cannabis Services, at 679 Terminal Ave., was shut
down Monday, three days after it opened, when police checked the
business and allegedly observed evidence they believe contravened
Canada's Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.
The dispensary was closed and secured until a search warrant was
granted to search the premises.Police seized about 0.7 kilograms of
[continues 347 words]
The Village of Cumberland has received four applications to operate a
medical marijuana dispensary business.
Application packages for Temporary Use Permits were submitted to the
village before the January 15 deadline.
Staff reviewed the applications for completeness and indicated each
contained all the required information and details.
The applicants are Trugreen Solutions Inc owned by George Oliver,
Cumberland Pot Pourri owned by Ian and Katherine Kelly, Mid Island
Medicinals owned by the Waverly Hotel and Pub, and Trichome Collective
owned by Marwayne Enterprises Ltd.
[continues 263 words]
Advocates call for increased access to new drug treatment I don't need
to stick needles in my arms anymore... I can work a normal job.
A new therapy is the most effective intervention to treat opioid use
disorder and other associated harms, according a recent progress
report from the office of Alberta's chief medical officer of health.
Opioid replacement therapy (ORT) prevents the agonizing symptoms of
opiate withdrawal - allowing people to get clean and get their lives
"If I hadn't gotten on methadone, I'd probably be dead," said Chelsea
Burnham, a 25-year-old mental health and addictions outreach worker.
[continues 287 words]
Re: "Langford launches new bid to block marijuana dispensary," Feb. 15.
I'm fairly certain jay-walking is still against the law. Is Langford
Mayor Stew Young "mad as hell" that this is still going on, despite
There has long been good reason to decriminalize marijuana, as
Canadian drug laws arguably cause more harm than good. Our federal
government, along with a great many voters, clearly agree with this.
Municipalities need to take responsibility and do what they know is
right, with or without help from the federal government.
In the late 1990s, Sam Sullivan, today the Liberal MLA for
Vancouver-False Creek, paid for a 20-year-old sex worker's heroin
habit for a period of three weeks.
He was a city councillor at the time. The story was front-page news in
2005, when Sullivan made a successful run for mayor. During the
campaign, he refused to apologize for helping the girl purchase drugs.
"I had become very angry with a society that would let this lovely
young woman degrade herself because our morals wouldn't allow us to
accept where she was and help her try to move past it without
destroying her life in the process," Sullivan told the Vancouver
Courier that year.
[continues 702 words]
When it comes to fighting the illegal drug trade, fentanyl knows no
Overdose deaths attributed to the illicit opioid are skyrocketing each
year in cities, towns and on reserves in Alberta.
The Blood Tribe Police have not been immune to the effects on the
community it serves to protect. They welcome the Alberta Government's
announcement last week that police officers are among those who will
be trained to administer lifesaving Naloxone, which temporarily
reverses the effect of fentanyl.
[continues 589 words]
A 28-year-old man is facing drug trafficking charges after police
raided his east-end Hamilton medical marijuana dispensary Tuesday.
Officers from Hamilton police's vice and drugs unit executed a search
warrant at MMJ Canada - located at 146 Ottawa St. N. - around 1 p.m.
and said they found about $100,000 worth of marijuana and marijuana
products, including edibles.
"It was determined that the operator of this dispensary was committing
the criminal acts of possession for the purpose of trafficking
marijuana and THC because they were selling or giving away marijuana
or marijuana derivatives from their location," police said in a release.
[continues 187 words]
Victoria councillor criticizes first come, first served approach
The first of dozens of cannabis dispensary rezoning applications in
Victoria is headed to public hearing, but consideration of another
City councillors decided Thursday to forward an application for Trees,
at 546 Yates St., to public hearing, while deferring consideration of
a second application from Pure Releaf, for its proposed dispensary at
510-512 Yates St. - less than half a block from the Trees outlet.
Approval of both outlets would be in violation of the city's cannabis
dispensary rezoning policy, which mandates that storefront cannabis
retailers must be at least 200 metres from each other.
[continues 497 words]
Sick Kids' flawed Motherisk hair tests have shattered many lives, but
the case of a 10-year-old girl torn from her mother and left in 'legal
limbo' for almost half her life was shocking even to the judge who
heard the case. In his ruling, he delivered a searing indictment of a
broken system and apologized for a 'perfect storm' of errors and
incompetence that has left . . .
A 10-year-old girl has been in "legal limbo" for nearly half her life
after she was "wrongly apprehended" from her mother who had failed a
flawed drug test.
[continues 1526 words]
City has issued cease-and-desist order and threatened fines up to
Medical marijuana dispensary owners, employees and patients gathered
outside City Hall Wednesday in protest of the city's crackdown against
the businesses and to call for regulation.
The rally was organized in response to "cease and desist" letters the
city sent to 17 medical marijuana dispensaries last week.
The letters cited zoning infractions and come with a warning of fines
up to $50,000, plus up to $25,000 per day after a conviction.
[continues 365 words]
As marijuana becomes normalized, co-operation between the two
countries is growing fast, and the potential for growth is sky-high
From the moment you enter the security-controlled reception area at
Medreleaf, you notice there's something different about the place.
Perhaps it's the aroma in the air, reminiscent of marijuana plants,
which happen to be growing in the thousands just metres away. Or maybe
it's the smell of money, as in the revenue generated by Canada's
largest medical marijuana producer. It might also be the aroma of
Israel's agri-tech sector, since the Markham, Ont., company is a
partner with Tikun Olam, an Israeli firm that's a pioneer in the
development of medical grade marijuana to treat a variety of illnesses.
[continues 645 words]
It's a tough call, whether companies soon to be marketing recreational
marijuana should be allowed to brand their product. A precedent is in
the works with tobacco, to deny manufacturers the right to have
distinctive packaging. Some would extend that same caution to pot.
It's an issue that government will ultimately have to grapple with -
while hearing from proponents on both sides of the argument.
Garfield Mahood of Vancouver, president of the Campaign for Justice on
Tobacco Fraud, campaigned for decades to get the federal government to
force tobacco companies to use plain packaging.
[continues 345 words]
City files injunction to block dispensary that was first shut the day
West Shore RCMP have once again moved to shut down Langford's first
and only pot shop, arresting two people and seizing marijuana on Wednesday.
Mounties executed a search warrant at Green Tree Medical Dispensary at
108-688 Granderson Rd.
"The storefront had illegally reopened its doors over the weekend
contrary to municipal and federal regulations," said West Shore RCMP
spokesman Const. Alex Berube.
No charges have been laid and Berube said the investigation is
[continues 250 words]
Vendors argue branding needed for mainstream
VANCOUVER * Garfield Mahood has spent 30 years fighting for the
Canadian government to require plain packaging for cigarettes.
So, the longtime nonsmokers' rights activist says he doesn't have much
faith in the government's ability to regulate and restrict the
marketing of marijuana.
"They identified tobacco products as a cause of disease back in the
1950s," said Mahood, president of the Campaign for Justice on Tobacco
Fraud. "They've never been able to bring this epidemic close to a
[continues 622 words]
The B.C. government owns more than 25 low-income hotels in community
hit hardest by overdose drug deaths
Mayor Gregor Robertson is calling on the provincial government to set
up drug injection rooms in all of the single-room-occupancy hotels it
owns in the Downtown Eastside as another measure to prevent people
from dying of a drug overdose.
The provincial government owns more than 25 hotels in the Downtown
Eastside, where people are dying at an alarming rate of overdoses
largely linked to the deadly synthetic narcotic fentanyl.
[continues 985 words]
If there was ever a time that people needed to talk to their kids
about drugs it would be now.
The importance of education and communication were the key topics
brought up during an information session on the drug fentanyl held at
The Merge on Feb. 9.
Staff Sgt. Dale Foote, of the Burin Peninsula detachment of the RCMP,
was one of the invited speakers for the evening.
"Everyone thinks that the overdose at the hospital is going to be the
individual that is addicted to drugs, that's not (always) that case,"
said Foote during his presentation.
[continues 796 words]
After a spike in roadside drug seizures, Athabasca RCMP are reminding
people marijuana is still illegal.
The past month has seen a spike in drug seizures through traffic
stops, with approximately 10 grams of cocaine and methamphetamine and
300 grams of marijuana and marijuana products - such as hash and hash
oil - in 15 separate incidents, said Cpl. Curtis Harsulla, spokesman
for the Athabasca RCMP.
"Some folks think it may be legal soon, but it's not quite there,"
Typically, the traffic enforcement unit may seize 15 to 30 grams of
various drugs every five days, he said.
[continues 121 words]
Cities have the right to deny business licences to illegal marijuana
dispensaries and to prohibit the cultivation or sale of marijuana
through their zoning bylaws, a B.C. Supreme Court judge has ruled.
The case is the latest development in what has become a patchwork of
inconsistent rules and legal skirmishes as cities grapple with
changing laws and an aggressive new marijuana industry.
While the sale of marijuana at storefronts, such as dispensaries,
remains illegal, some cities such as Vancouver have moved to regulate
them through business licences. Others, including Abbotsford, have
remained determined to keep them outlawed.
[continues 740 words]
As the feds prepare to legalize marijuana, the task force appointed to
conceptualize legalization has now recommended the drug be sold in
I can't imagine this being implemented successfully in Vancouver. This
city famously has more pot shops than Tim Hortons restaurants and from
Point Grey's Wealth to Marc Emery's Cannabis Culture they all have
unique brands designed to attract a particular clientele.
They are also all operating outside the law and have been - in some
cases - for years. Now, the federal government wants to legalize pot
and force the blooming industry to comply with their rules but just
like you can't close Pandora's box once it's been opened, it will be
extremely difficult to shove all the brands and businesses built
around marijuana into one uniform, plain package.
[continues 273 words]
Hamilton man charged at Harvester Road unit
A Hamilton man has been charged after police raided a Burlington
business allegedly selling medical marijuana to people directly and
also to those without a licence to possess it.
Members of the Halton Regional Police Services Burlington Street Crime
Unit, in collaboration with City of Burlington bylaw enforcement,
conducted an investigation into Budtanica Pain Relief Group operating
out of 5125 Harvester Rd., Unit 1, east of Appleby Line.
Police and city officials allege the business was operating outside
the city's zoning bylaws, which requires premises used for the
growing, producing, testing, destroying, storing or distribution of
medical marijuana or cannabis be authorized and licensed by the
federal health ministry under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.
[continues 239 words]
Langford Mayor Stew Young says he's madder than hell that the
municipality's first and only pot shop reopened on the weekend.
"I am not going to turn a blind eye to something illegal," said Young,
reacting to news that Green Tree Medical Dispensary is up and running.
The store, at 108-688 Granderson Rd., had been shut down by West Shore
RCMP on Jan. 17, the day after it opened.
"It is still illegal and the police will do their job, but the federal
government better get its act together, because I'm fed up with the
top politicians in the country saying we're going to legalize pot and
it's turned into a free-for-all in the meantime," said Young, adding
it's up to West Shore RCMP to take action. "I will never go to a
policeman and say: 'Do not uphold the law.' "
[continues 594 words]
West Kelowna council set to consider bylaw that would restrict where
medicinal marijuana can be grown, sold
It's high time to force the closure of pot shops in downtown Westbank,
city and police officials say. A new bylaw intended to curb the
proliferation of stores selling so-called medicinal marijuana will be
considered today by West Kelowna council.
The proposed regulations set strict limits on where and how
marijuana-growing businesses could operate in the future with the
expected legalization of the drug.
[continues 314 words]
Patients who consumed tainted medical marijuana from
government-regulated suppliers are questioning how safe the industry
is in the wake of several high-profile recalls due to banned
pesticides, which have exposed serious gaps in Health Canada's oversight.
After a string of recent recalls by Mettrum Ltd., OrganiGram Inc. and
Aurora Cannabis Inc. because of the presence of myclobutanil - a
banned pesticide that produces hydrogen cyanide when heated - a number
of patients told The Globe and Mail they don't see how Health Canada
can assure them the product can be trusted. Revelations that the
government isn't testing regularly to prove all companies aren't using
harmful chemicals have left consumers concerned for their health.
[continues 955 words]
Edmonton is battling a new drug overdose crisis that simply doesn't
fit any standard assumptions, council members were told Monday.
Only 20 per cent of the overdose deaths from fentanyl last year were
in core neighbourhoods. Young men in the suburbs are actually at a
much higher risk, said city officials.
"This has gone beyond being an inner-city issue," said Mayor Don
Iveson, adding those dying most often from illicit fentanyl and
prescription opioid painkillers are taking them alone at home where no
one is available to help when things go wrong.
[continues 510 words]
A Victoria mother said she was desperate when she took her daughter to
buy "street" methadone after being told it would take two weeks to a
month to get a proper prescription.
"To our dismay, we have an addicted daughter asking for help and we
are forced to buy some street drugs like a common criminal to keep her
going until we can get her some help," said Correne Antrobus in a
letter to the Times Colonist. "We have been waiting for this
opportunity to help our daughter before she overdoses and the window
is very slight when an addict is asking for help."
[continues 419 words]