Vass, Keith 1/1/1997 - 31/12/2018
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1 CN BC: Grits Won't Legalize Pot, Iggy Tells StudentsFri, 22 Jan 2010
Source:Peninsula News Review (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:69 Added:01/24/2010

If he wanted to talk about prorogation, Michael Ignatieff came to the wrong place.

The federal Liberal leader has been trying to make hay from Prime Minister Stephen Harper's decision to suspend Parliament.

But his audience at the University of Victoria last Friday was more interested in talking about things beyond the country's borders.

"I support free market solutions to poverty reduction and building a more global society, but I don't think a way for Canada to achieve it is to allow (mining) corporations like Goldcorp to go into indigenous areas of Guatemala, which they're doing," said Mark Brown, an engineering student and member of Engineers Without Borders.

[continues 263 words]

2 CN BC: Ignatieff Answers Students' Questions On OverseasWed, 20 Jan 2010
Source:Saanich News (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:65 Added:01/20/2010

If he wanted to talk about prorogation, Michael Ignatieff came to the wrong place.

The federal Liberal leader has been trying to make hay from Prime Minister Stephen Harper decision to suspend Parliament.

But his audience at the University of Victoria Friday was more interested in talking about things beyond the country's borders.

"I support free market solutions to poverty reduction and building a more global society, but I don't think a way for Canada to achieve it is to allow (mining) corporations like Goldcorp to go into indigenous areas of Guatemala, which they're doing," said Mark Brown, an engineering student and member of Engineers Without Borders.

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3 CN BC: Fixed Needle Exchange Site Far From RealityTue, 04 Nov 2008
Source:Victoria News (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:79 Added:11/07/2008

Two buildings have been looked at as possible fixed sites for Victoria's needle exchange services, but nothing suitable has yet been found.

"So far, I can tell you we've had nothing that's even remotely promising," said Shannon Turner, director of public health with the Vancouver Island Health Authority.

Turner has received phone calls from people "with all kinds of outlandish tales," reporting they've heard a fixed site would be opening in specific locations around the city.

Victoria's only fixed needle exchange, run for VIHA by service provider AIDS Vancouver Island on Cormorant Street, closed at the end of May after being dogged by controversy over public disorder outside its doors.

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4 CN BC: Mobile Exchange Drops Vans From Local ServiceTue, 21 Oct 2008
Source:Victoria News (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:82 Added:10/22/2008

Circulating vans have been dropped from the mix of methods for providing needle exchange services to Victoria's injection drug users.

The vans, driving a loop around Rock Bay, weren't reaching the people in need, AIDS Vancouver Island executive director Katrina Jensen told city councillors Thursday.

"The population served by the needle exchange is very diverse. We've got a range of clients, not just the street-involved homeless people, but people who hold down jobs and live in outlying communities," she said.

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5 CN BC: Fewer Needles Exchanged Since Fixed Site ClosedThu, 25 Sep 2008
Source:Victoria News (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:46 Added:09/28/2008

The number of clean needles being handed out has dropped dramatically since Victoria's fixed-site needle exchange shut its doors at the end of May.

Figures released by the Vancouver Island Health Authority last week show the number of clean needles being handed out by all service providers dropped from a monthly average of 45,400 in the first four months of 2008 to 24,700 in June, the first month without a fixed exchange site.

At the same time, the number of used needles being collected in the city dropped by more than 60 per cent, from 36,900 to 13,400.

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6 CN BC: Victoria Needle Exchange To Go MobileFri, 16 May 2008
Source:Goldstream Gazette (Victoria, CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:84 Added:05/18/2008

Victoria's needle exchange will be operating out of vans and possibly backpacks after being evicted from its Cormorant Street location at the end of the month.

"We've not yet secured a fixed site and we're just moving forward with plans to ensure some form of service delivery after May 31," said Andrea Langlois, a spokeswoman for needle exchange operator AIDS Vancouver Island.

While AVI was still working on operation details Monday, Langlois confirmed needles would be taken in and handed out "mostly in vehicles but also on foot."

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7 CN BC: Embattled Needle Exchange Left In LurchFri, 21 Mar 2008
Source:Oak Bay News (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:83 Added:03/23/2008

VIHA Halts Plan To Move Controversial Service To Pandora Avenue Building

With nowhere to go, operators of Victoria's needle exchange are hurrying to come up with options to keep the service running after May 31, when its troubled tenancy on Cormorant Street comes to an end.

AIDS Vancouver Island learned Friday that the Vancouver Island Health Authority board of directors has frozen plans to move the service into a new home, the St. John Ambulance building at 941 Pandora Avenue, until more community consultation takes place.

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8 CN BC: Embattled Needle Exchange Left In LurchFri, 21 Mar 2008
Source:Saanich News (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:83 Added:03/21/2008

VIHA Halts Plan To Move Controversial Service To Pandora Avenue Building

With nowhere to go, operators of Victoria's needle exchange are hurrying to come up with options to keep the service running after May 31, when its troubled tenancy on Cormorant Street comes to an end.

AIDS Vancouver Island learned Friday that the Vancouver Island Health Authority board of directors has frozen plans to move the service into a new home, the St. John Ambulance building at 941 Pandora Avenue, until more community consultation takes place.

[continues 425 words]

9 CN BC: Embattled Needle Exchange Left In LurchWed, 19 Mar 2008
Source:Victoria News (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:81 Added:03/20/2008

With nowhere to go, operators of Victoria's needle exchange are hurrying to come up with options to keep the service running after May 31, when its troubled tenancy on Cormorant Street comes to an end.

AIDS Vancouver Island learned Friday that the Vancouver Island Health Authority board of directors has frozen plans to move the service into a new home, the St. John Ambulance building at 941 Pandora Avenue, until more community consultation takes place.

"At this point we're coming up with (both) a short-term and a long-term contingency plan," said Katrina Jensen, AIDS Vancouver Island executive director.

[continues 399 words]

10 CN BC: Regaining RespectFri, 11 Jan 2008
Source:Victoria News (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:103 Added:01/11/2008

Drug Users Take Responsibility For Discarded Needles

The street outside is dark as lights come on inside the little office across the street from the police station on Caledonia Avenue. It's 7 a.m.

Five stick-on letters clinging to the front window spell out a single word, SOLID.

Inside, two men are getting ready for a few hours' work. Both are drug addicts - one is recovering from an addiction to crack cocaine, the other still shoots himself with heroin every morning.

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11 CN BC: Local Cops Take Part In Island-Wide Pot BustWed, 05 Sep 2007
Source:Saanich News (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:46 Added:09/09/2007

Two Victoria Police Department officers were part of an airborne pot-busting operation last month.

They were the VPD's contribution to a marijuana eradication effort that saw officers from the RCMP, Saanich Police and the VPD cut down 19,000 marijuana plants growing on Crown land around Vancouver Island. Transportation was provided by Canadian Forces Sea King helicopters.

"They were dismantling those crops and taking them down, doing all the things that are involved," said Sgt. Grant Hamilton, spokesman for the VPD.

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12 CN BC: Crystal Meth Education UrgedTue, 26 Jun 2007
Source:Nanaimo News Bulletin (CN BC) Author:Vass, Keith Area:British Columbia Lines:57 Added:06/27/2007

There's no question that crystal meth is on Nanaimo streets. It's been here for years.

The question city councillor Merv Unger wants raised is how to get the message about the drug's dangers to school kids.

Unger is urging that school anti-drug education focus on the drug because he's heard reports that crystal meth is being sprayed on other drugs and even candy in an attempt to addict younger users.

He hasn't heard about it happening in Nanaimo yet, but that's why it's time to raise the alarm bell.

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