Boys and Girls Club of Williams Lake Harm Reduction Co-ordinator Jordan Davis displays a poster warning of the dangers of taking street drugs unknowingly laced with fentanyl. The poster is part of a multi-agency education campaign in the Cariboo Chilcotin aimed at saving lives.

Boys and Girls Club of Williams Lake Harm Reduction Co-ordinator Jordan Davis displays a poster warning of the dangers of taking street drugs unknowingly laced with fentanyl. The poster is part of a multi-agency education campaign in the Cariboo Chilcotin aimed at saving lives.

Fentanyl crisis prompts multi-agency response

Williams Lake Community Policing, the Boys and Girls Club’s harm reduction co-ordinator Jordan Davis and the RCMP raise fentanyl awareness.

Williams Lake Community Policing, the Boys and Girls Club’s harm reduction co-ordinator Jordan Davis and the RCMP are teaming up to raise public awareness about fentanyl.

Powerful opioids like fentanyl and other street drugs have created a public crisis across the province, with overdose deaths on track to double from 400 on average per year to 800.

Stats like that are terrifying, she said.

“It’s definitely getting worse,” said Davis, who has been speaking out on the issue locally for the past year.

In August over a three week period in Williams Lake, for example, there were five fentanyl related overdoses. In cities like Kamloops and Vernon, health workers are dealing with as many as five overdoses per day, up from five on average per week in years previous.

Davis said street drugs – everything from cocaine, to heroin to marijuana — are being unknowingly cut with fentanyl by dealers because it is a cheap and powerful drug.

“It’s not safe for anyone to be doing street drugs,” she said. “Even marijuana is being laced with fentanyl.”

The crisis prompted Williams Lake RCMP Insp. Jeff Pelley to issue a letter to parents this week, urging them to talk to their children about fentanyl.

Davis and the other agencies are set to take their message to school students in School District 27 later this month.