opioid crisis

Paramedics respond to a call as Vancouver city councillor Jean Swanson attends a march on International Overdose Awareness Day, in Vancouver, on August 31, 2021. In August 2022, the BC Coroner Service says 169 British Columbians died to the toxic drug supply. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

169 British Columbians killed from toxic drug supply in August: Coroner

Number a small decrease from 192 deaths in July

 

The Tiny Home Village in Victoria’s North Park neighbourhood welcomed 30 residents in May 2021. (Black Press Media file photo)

Tiny home villages as solution to homelessness? 3 B.C. mayors say yes

Sites up and running in Victoria and Duncan, Port Alberni on its way to do the same

 

Overdose Awareness Manitoba is asking people across Canada and beyond to draw attention to those lost to the toxic drug supply by displaying an empty purple chair. Aug. 31 is International Overdose Awareness Day. (Overdose Awareness Manitoba/Twitter)

Why you may see purple chairs popping up on International Overdose Awareness Day

Empty purple chairs represent those lost to the toxic drug supply

Overdose Awareness Manitoba is asking people across Canada and beyond to draw attention to those lost to the toxic drug supply by displaying an empty purple chair. Aug. 31 is International Overdose Awareness Day. (Overdose Awareness Manitoba/Twitter)
Moms Stop the Harm advocates and supporters gather at Centennial Square on the sixth anniversary of a public health emergency due to the opioid-related deaths across British Columbia, in Victoria on April 14, 2022. B.C. says it has suffered more than 10,000 overdose deaths since the province declared a public health emergency in April 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

Moms Stop the Harm planning overdose awareness events across B.C.

Grassroots group teaching naloxone administration and providing place to grieve without stigma

Moms Stop the Harm advocates and supporters gather at Centennial Square on the sixth anniversary of a public health emergency due to the opioid-related deaths across British Columbia, in Victoria on April 14, 2022. B.C. says it has suffered more than 10,000 overdose deaths since the province declared a public health emergency in April 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Love in the Time of Fentanyl, which won an award at this year’s DOXA Documentary Film Festival, screens at Nelson’s Civic Theatre on Aug. 29. Admission is free. Photo: Love in the Time of Fentanyl

Breaking the law to provide safe drugs? Nelson advocate says it should be considered

Dylan Griffith of Kootenay Insurrection for Safe Supply wants distribution of tested illicit drugs

Love in the Time of Fentanyl, which won an award at this year’s DOXA Documentary Film Festival, screens at Nelson’s Civic Theatre on Aug. 29. Admission is free. Photo: Love in the Time of Fentanyl
Signs pinned up by Moms Stop the Harm members outside Victoria’s Fairmont Empress hotel, where Canada’s premiers were meeting on July 12. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)

PHOTOS: Overdoses, healthcare crises spur Victoria protests at premiers’ meeting

Groups gathered outside the Fairmont Empress in side-by-side calls for action

Signs pinned up by Moms Stop the Harm members outside Victoria’s Fairmont Empress hotel, where Canada’s premiers were meeting on July 12. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)
B.C. Attorney General David Eby and Minister of Mental Health and Addictions Sheila Malcolmson announced a $150 million settlement with Purdue Pharma Canada on June 29. (Jane Skrypnek/Black Press Media)

B.C.-led lawsuit against Purdue Pharma results in $150M settlement

Money to be distributed throughout Canada for health care costs incurred from opioid damage

B.C. Attorney General David Eby and Minister of Mental Health and Addictions Sheila Malcolmson announced a $150 million settlement with Purdue Pharma Canada on June 29. (Jane Skrypnek/Black Press Media)
Advocates for decriminalization and safe supply of drugs stood outside Nelson’s city hall on April 14th. In the month of April, 161 British Columbians died from the toxic drug supply, according to the BC Coroners Service. (Bill Metcalfe/News Staff)

B.C. sees 161 people die to toxic drug crisis in April, amid calls for safer supply

April death rates highest in Northern Health and Vancouver Coastal Health

Advocates for decriminalization and safe supply of drugs stood outside Nelson’s city hall on April 14th. In the month of April, 161 British Columbians died from the toxic drug supply, according to the BC Coroners Service. (Bill Metcalfe/News Staff)
A 2019 pilot program in Vancouver found take-home fentanyl tests have the potential to increase safer consumption of drugs. (Credit: Amy Romer/BC Centre on Substance Use)

Take-home fentanyl tests could increase safer drug consumption in B.C.: study

2019 Vancouver study found 30% of participants made safer choices after using take-home test

A 2019 pilot program in Vancouver found take-home fentanyl tests have the potential to increase safer consumption of drugs. (Credit: Amy Romer/BC Centre on Substance Use)
From left: SafePoint’s Hyeth Manlosa, Ian Fraser, and Megan White. After five years in operation, SafePoint staff have reversed 2,845 drug poisonings, according to Fraser Health. (Photo submitted)

B.C. safe consumption site marks five years of ‘truly saving lives’

SafePoint in Surrey has seen 300,000 visits from 3,533 people, with 2,845 drug poisonings reversed

From left: SafePoint’s Hyeth Manlosa, Ian Fraser, and Megan White. After five years in operation, SafePoint staff have reversed 2,845 drug poisonings, according to Fraser Health. (Photo submitted)
Courtenay-Alberni MP Gord Johns, the NDP’s critic for mental health and harm reduction, is pictured in Ottawa with members of the Mom’s Stop the Harm advocacy group. Photo supplied

B.C. MP vows to keep fighting, despite toxic drug crisis bill rejection

Courtenay-Alberni MP’s Bill C-216 aimed to legislate health-based approach to substance use

Courtenay-Alberni MP Gord Johns, the NDP’s critic for mental health and harm reduction, is pictured in Ottawa with members of the Mom’s Stop the Harm advocacy group. Photo supplied
A man pauses at a coffin after carrying it during a memorial march to remember victims of overdose deaths in Vancouver on August 15, 2020. Advocates say Health Canada’s announcement to decriminalize personal possession of 2.5 grams will do little to save people’s lives. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

For decriminalization to save lives, users need to be allowed to carry more drugs: B.C. advocates

Health Canada nearly halved requested personal possession amount in approval May 31

A man pauses at a coffin after carrying it during a memorial march to remember victims of overdose deaths in Vancouver on August 15, 2020. Advocates say Health Canada’s announcement to decriminalize personal possession of 2.5 grams will do little to save people’s lives. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Dean Anderson holds up a sign before a march on the first National Day of Action to draw attention to the opioid overdose epidemic, in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, on February 21, 2017. Beginning Jan. 31 2023, adults in B.C. will be allowed to carry up to 2.5 grams of drugs for personal use, Health Canada announced May 31, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

B.C. approved to decriminalize possession of small amounts of street drugs as deaths soar

Personal possession of up to 2.5 grams to be allowed for three years beginning Jan. 31, 2023

Dean Anderson holds up a sign before a march on the first National Day of Action to draw attention to the opioid overdose epidemic, in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, on February 21, 2017. Beginning Jan. 31 2023, adults in B.C. will be allowed to carry up to 2.5 grams of drugs for personal use, Health Canada announced May 31, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
A University of British Columbia researcher says it’s unclear what the cause of the majority of B.C.’s deaths during 18-months of the pandemic is. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

B.C. saw more deaths than expected over 18 months, but research can’t pinpoint why

Only 22 per cent of excess deaths during research period are directly attributed to COVID-19

A University of British Columbia researcher says it’s unclear what the cause of the majority of B.C.’s deaths during 18-months of the pandemic is. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users president Lorna Bird says her dog Joy can tell when someone is overdosing. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)

Overdose detecting dogs save lives, lift spirits in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside

When someone overdoses at VANDU, pups Guess and Joy are quick to alert the nearest human

Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users president Lorna Bird says her dog Joy can tell when someone is overdosing. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
People hold signs during a memorial march to remember victims of overdose deaths in Vancouver in 2020. In March 2022, 165 people died of toxic drug poisoning in B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

More than 5 British Columbians died a day from toxic drug poisoning in March

165 people died in total, down from 174 in February and 207 in January

People hold signs during a memorial march to remember victims of overdose deaths in Vancouver in 2020. In March 2022, 165 people died of toxic drug poisoning in B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Interior Health centres will be displaying black balloons Tursday, April 14, in memory of all the lives lost to an overdose. (Contributed)

‘A sombre anniversary’: black balloons honour Interior Health’s overdose victims

All are invited to display balloons Thursday to mark the sixth anniversary of the declaration of B.C.’s opioid crisis

Interior Health centres will be displaying black balloons Tursday, April 14, in memory of all the lives lost to an overdose. (Contributed)
Interior Health has issued a toxic drug alert for Williams Lake. (IH image)

Toxic drug alert issued for Williams Lake

Interior Health is warning of high levels of toxicity in local drug supply

  • Apr 10, 2022
Interior Health has issued a toxic drug alert for Williams Lake. (IH image)
A fentanyl test strip is used at Vancouver Coastal Health in Vancouver, Tuesday, January, 21, 2020. Checking illicit drugs for potentially deadly toxins is the best option to prevent fatal overdose in the absence of a safer supply, but that service should be expanded to rural and remote communities in British Columbia, says the manager of a drug-checking program being evaluated by the BC Centre for Substance Use. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Scale up B.C. drug-checking programs to save lives: centre on substance use

Jenny Matthews said drug users who live in non-urban areas often can’t get their drugs tested for contaminants

A fentanyl test strip is used at Vancouver Coastal Health in Vancouver, Tuesday, January, 21, 2020. Checking illicit drugs for potentially deadly toxins is the best option to prevent fatal overdose in the absence of a safer supply, but that service should be expanded to rural and remote communities in British Columbia, says the manager of a drug-checking program being evaluated by the BC Centre for Substance Use. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward