REAL Women of Canada is relieved that opposition leader Pierre Poilievre is recommending positive drug policies. These policies will go a long way in eliminating the harms created by the Liberal government’s policies which have led to the deaths by drug overdose of 31,000 Canadians from January 2016 to December 2021. The Public Health Agency of Canada has reported that there were already 1843 overdose deaths in Canada from January to March 2022.
The Liberal government’s response to this crisis has been, curiously, to increase addicts’ access to illicit drugs by way of drug injection sites, and recently, by a policy of providing free drugs to addicts that only need to be drug-dependent to receive a prescription. These drugs are then consumed on unsupervised premises in any amount. Invariably some of these “free” drugs are sold by the addicts to drug traffickers and other addicts, while they obtain drugs for themselves from other sources.
Critics of Mr. Poilievre’s policies argue by way of misleading information that:
- There have been no deaths in drug consumption sites
- The recovery-orientated policies in Alberta have led to an increase in drug overdose deaths
It is a fact that addicts, after departing a drug injection site, walk through their communities and die from overdose in the streets or hospitals. A death did occur soon after an addict left a drug injection site in November in Moncton, New Brunswick. These deaths are a direct result of the drug injection that took place in the so-called “safe” site. The BC Coroners report (January 2012 – October 2022) states at pg. 20, footnote 2, although no deaths occurred directly on supervised consumption sites, this did not include circumstances where the death occurred later in hospital.
Furthermore, the assertion that Alberta’s recovery-oriented drug policies have not decreased drug overdose deaths is incorrect. The actual statistic from the Alberta Surveillance system indicates there were 1030 mortalities from drug overdose from January-August 2022 while in the same period in 2021, there were 1110 overdose deaths. This is a 7.2% drop (see Alberta substance use surveillance system – SAS Visual Analytics)
The simplistic approach to drug addiction by the federal Liberal government, providing increased access to drugs, does not help the addict. It provides no exit strategy for addicts to get off drugs. Providing readily available drugs only deepens dependency and leads to continued and sustained suffering and frequently, to a terrifying and lonely death. The addict becomes a victim, with all discipline, responsibility, and accountability removed from him.
To reduce the number of people suffering from addiction, it is required as suggested by Mr. Poilievre, that addicts be provided with treatment and recovery programs that include dealing with underlying problems such as mental and physical health issues. This is the only genuine way to assist drug addicts and decrease drug overdose deaths.
Mr. Poilievre is right on track with his drug policies, which REAL Women of Canada fully supports.
Mr. Poilievre Needs Support for his Drug Policies
Mr. Poilievre has been receiving a great deal of backlash from those who want liberation of our drug laws
Please write to Mr. Poilievre supporting his drug policy. Mr. Poilievre can be reached firstname.lastname@example.org and mailed to House of Commons: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1A 0A6