Monday, July 18, 2022

BC Legislature Health Committee hosting consultation on overdose and drug toxicity crisis

The numbers are more than concerning, with each month the province releasing data on the current crisis in health care coming out of overdoses and drug toxicity cases there are claiming the lives of far too many British Columbians.

Just last week, Sheila Malcolmson, the Minister of Mental Health and Addictions released a statement in the days following the May statistics, a tally which revealed that 195 people had lost their lives to a poisoned drug supply in that month alone.

“A devastating 195 people lost their lives to the poisoned drug supply in May. I’m grateful to everyone on the front lines of this public health crisis for their extraordinary efforts. Without them, B.C. would have lost more lives. 

The early months of 2022 saw a decrease in toxic drug deaths, but despite unprecedented work to turn the tide on the crisis, this trend tragically did not continue in May. 

Six people a day are dying due to the toxic drug crisis in this province and it’s nothing short of tragic. But it’s the reason we must persevere and continue the vital work of reducing the risk of toxic drug poisonings and saving lives."

The Province has also outlined some of the actions that they have taken in response to the concerns over the escalating drug poisoning situation in BC.

Among her notes of last week was mention of plans to build a new sobering and assessment Centre for Prince George in the fall, a positive step towards the issue, but as we noted at the time, one that still leaves Prince Rupert and the Northwest far down a highway when it comes to immediate care for this region.

Local Politicians in the Terrace area are far ahead of those in the rest of the region,  when it comes to advocating for a Northwest option, which as they would have it, would be based in the Skeena Valley community.

The need for a Northwest option, whether in Terrace, Prince Rupert or both communities, is a message that residents of the region now have an opportunity to deliver first hand, with the BC Legislature's Health Committee hosing a consultation process until August 5th.

Three areas of note frame the consultation from the Health Committee.

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The Committee is taking written submission towards any of those themes (you don't have to address all three if you don't weigh)  you can submit your observations, comments and recommendations here.

The clock runs out on this round of consultation at 3PM on August 5th.

More notes on the work of the BC Legislature can be explored from our archive page.

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