VICTORIA, B.C. - As National Overdose Awareness Day approaches and BC Coroners Service reveals over 190 lives lost to the toxic and unregulated drug supply in July, it is time to move beyond generic statements and demand transparency in the measures being taken to prevent further loss of life.
“Year after year, month after month, we have witnessed the devastating toll of unregulated toxic drugs on our communities,” said Sonia Furstenau, Leader of the B.C. Greens and MLA for Cowichan Valley. “While condolences and expressions of sorrow are appreciated, it is no longer good enough to simply acknowledge the problem. Concrete actions must be taken, and progress must be reported month to month.
“Too often, we have seen the same copy-paste reports and statements. This cycle of repetitive promises without tangible results has left our communities frustrated and exhausted. It's time to move past press releases and words of sympathy, the BC NDP needs to show their work.”
The number one recommendation from the all-party committee report on the toxic drug crisis was to rapidly scale up a flexible, evidence-based, low-barrier comprehensive continuum of care, and to provide regular public reporting on results. The NDP government should be providing monthly updates, with reporting that includes:
- The number of people in B.C. with access to safe supply.
- The count of active overdose prevention sites in B.C.
- The quantity of new affordable and supportive housing units created.
- Access to mental health supports across the province, including youth-specific supports.
- Availability of treatment spaces, both public and private.
- Updates on the regulation of addictions treatment in B.C.
“On this year’s National Overdose Awareness Day, we can honour the memory of those we have lost by demanding more. It's time to stop just expressing how sad we are and start showing exactly what we are doing to prevent more deaths. Our communities deserve nothing less than our wholehearted commitment to saving lives.”
B.C. Green Caucus
+1 250-882-6187 | [email protected]