B.C. member of parliament takes feds to task on opioid crisis

‘Too many families are tragically losing parents, siblings and children to the opioid crisis.’

  • Dec. 12, 2018 9:45 a.m.

Rick Stiebel/News staff

A group of New Democractic Party members of parliament are demanding the federal government declare the opioid crisis a national public health emergency.

Alistair MacGregor, MP for Cowichan-Malahat-Langford, as well Kootenay-Columbia MP Wayne Stetski called on the Trudeau government this week, urging it to commit significant new funding and resources to addressing the opioid crisis immediately.

READ MORE: Men account for highest number of deaths in opioid crisis

READ MORE: New in-depth report sheds light on who in B.C. is dying of drug overdoses

“Across Canada, too many families are tragically losing parents, siblings and children to the opioid crisis,” the group said in a news release. “From downtown neighbourhoods to our most remote areas, no community has been untouched by these highly addictive and dangerous drugs.”

READ MORE: NDP’s Jagmeet Singh proposes new approach to tackling opioid crisis

Citing research by the Angus Reid Institute, the release said one in eight Canadians, or roughly 3.5 million people, have become dependent on opioids in the last five years alone.

Fewer than one in four Canadians believe that the federal government has responded appropriately, a statistic the NDP agrees with, he added.

B.C. has seen the brunt of overdose deaths in Canada, with 1,143 deaths between January and September of this year. The province makes up more than one-third of all overdose deaths in the country.

READ MORE: Two sons lost to the opioid crisis, a B.C. mother calls for change

“The Trudeau Liberals claim to be doing everything in their power to address the opioid crisis, and yet, that’s clearly not true,” the release said. “New Democrats have been calling for the declaration of a national public health emergency for over two years. It’s time for the Liberal government to act.”

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Single-engine aircraft crashes near Telkwa

Two occupants of the plane sustained minor injuries and were transported to hospital

Cullen announces bid for provincial NDP nomination for Stikine riding

Current MLA Donaldson not seeking re-election

Northern Health records 1st fatality due to COVID-19

Six people died from the novel coronavirus on the weekend, health officials confirm

Police look for vehicle, male driver after incident involving girl, 11

The driver was described as an older Caucasian male with white hair, no glasses, and no facial hair

Anger growing among B.C. salmon anglers shut out of public fishery

Fisheries minister stands by “very difficult” decisions to limit openings

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

CHARTS: Beyond Metro Vancouver, COVID-19 cases in B.C. haven’t increased much recently

COVID-19 case counts outside of Metro Vancouver have been level since July

Record-breaking 165 new COVID-19 cases diagnosed in B.C. in 24-hour period

Fifty-seven people are in hospital battling the novel coronavirus

B.C. teachers file Labour Relations Board application over COVID-19 classroom concerns

The application comes as B.C.’s second week of the new school year comes to a close

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

B.C.’s COVID-19 economic recovery plan: Top 5 things you need to know

Jobs training, tax incentives for employers to hire staff and more

March to protect old growth, stop industrial logging coming to B.C. Legislature

Organizers say they want to give frontline communities a bigger say in nearby logging

B.C. releases details of $1.5B economic recovery plan, $660M in business tax incentives

Economic plan includes support for employers, as well as training for workers

Most Read