opioid deaths

Laura Shaver, back left, speaks at a gathering to remember those who died from a suspected illicit drug overdose, in Vancouver, on Wednesday, February 9, 2022. British Columbia is introducing a policy of decriminalization on Tuesday as part of what it says is an overall plan in its fight against overdose deaths from illicit drugs. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Laura Shaver, back left, speaks at a gathering to remember those who died from a suspected illicit drug overdose, in Vancouver, on Wednesday, February 9, 2022. British Columbia is introducing a policy of decriminalization on Tuesday as part of what it says is an overall plan in its fight against overdose deaths from illicit drugs. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

What to know about B.C. decriminalizing possession of drugs for personal use – starting today

Federal exemption from the Controlled Drugs and Substance Act will continue until Jan. 31, 2026

 

A person in Nelson holds a bag with 2.5 grams of methamphetamine. Possession of that amount of certain types of drugs, including meth, will be decriminalized in B.C. as of Jan. 31. Photo: Tyler Harper

B.C. drug advocates cautiously optimistic about decriminalization

But there remains concerns about how possession will be enforced

 

A file photo shows bags of illicit drugs seized by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. The Vancouver police seized 73 kilograms of drugs from Lower Mainland gangs during Project Tint in July 2022. (U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration photo)

Possession of 2.5 grams of illicit drugs to be decriminalized in B.C.

Personal use of up to 2.5 grams certain illegal drugs to be decriminalized tomorrow

 

The Bass Coast and Shambhala electronic music festivals each host drug-checking services. An Interior Health report shows a rise in festival goers having their drugs checked, especially if they bought drugs at the festival. Photo: Bass Coast

B.C. music festival visitors more likely to use drug-checking services: Interior Health

A report found high uptake of drug testing at the Bass Coast and Shambhala music festivals

The Bass Coast and Shambhala electronic music festivals each host drug-checking services. An Interior Health report shows a rise in festival goers having their drugs checked, especially if they bought drugs at the festival. Photo: Bass Coast
Moms Stop the Harm advocates and supporters march to the Ministry of Health building where pictures of loved ones hang on display during the sixth anniversary to mark the public health emergency on opioid-related overdose across the province in Victoria, April 14, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

179 people died from B.C.’s poisoned drug supply in October

October’s numbers bring 2022’s total to 1,827 lives lost

Moms Stop the Harm advocates and supporters march to the Ministry of Health building where pictures of loved ones hang on display during the sixth anniversary to mark the public health emergency on opioid-related overdose across the province in Victoria, April 14, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Jessica Michalofsky on the lawn in front of the Ministry of Health building in Victoria. Her son Aubrey Michalofsky died from drug overdose in Beasley, B.C., west of Nelson. Jessica is completing a marathon a day around the block every weekday in the hopes of getting a meeting with someone to discuss action for safe supply. Photo: Arnold Lim/Black Press Media

B.C. mom runs daily marathon in front of health ministry office after son dies of drug poisoning

Jessica Michalofsky wants change after her son died of drug poisoning

Jessica Michalofsky on the lawn in front of the Ministry of Health building in Victoria. Her son Aubrey Michalofsky died from drug overdose in Beasley, B.C., west of Nelson. Jessica is completing a marathon a day around the block every weekday in the hopes of getting a meeting with someone to discuss action for safe supply. Photo: Arnold Lim/Black Press Media
People hold banners during a march to remember those who died during the overdose crisis and to call for a safe supply of illicit drugs on International Overdose Awareness Day, in Vancouver in 2021. British Columbia’s chief coroner says at least 1,095 people died from suspected illicit drug overdoses from January to June in 2022, the highest death toll recorded in the first six months of a calendar year during the province’s overdose crisis. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
People hold banners during a march to remember those who died during the overdose crisis and to call for a safe supply of illicit drugs on International Overdose Awareness Day, in Vancouver in 2021. British Columbia’s chief coroner says at least 1,095 people died from suspected illicit drug overdoses from January to June in 2022, the highest death toll recorded in the first six months of a calendar year during the province’s overdose crisis. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
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)
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
Lavatta Frank and William Pierre Jr. sing Indigenous songs at the legislature steps Thursday morning. (Kiernan Green/News Staff)

Rallying moms; some dads, call for more action to reduce B.C. opioid deaths

Moms Stop the Harm leaders considering trip to Ottawa for discussion with PM on issue

Lavatta Frank and William Pierre Jr. sing Indigenous songs at the legislature steps Thursday morning. (Kiernan Green/News Staff)
Jodi Higgs (right) holds a vial of naloxone and Christine Christensen holds a kit in the parking lot of the Pacific Community Resources Society in Chilliwack on Thursday, May 20, 2021. The society is offering a number of upcoming events, workshops and videos to help educate friends and family members who have loved ones that are drug users. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)

Educating family, friends key to helping ‘hidden’ population of substance users

Naloxone training one of many ways to help folks closest to unseen population of opioid users

Jodi Higgs (right) holds a vial of naloxone and Christine Christensen holds a kit in the parking lot of the Pacific Community Resources Society in Chilliwack on Thursday, May 20, 2021. The society is offering a number of upcoming events, workshops and videos to help educate friends and family members who have loved ones that are drug users. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Ambulance crews have been busy with a record number of emergency overdose calls this Wednesday, April 21. (BC Emergency Health Services)

B.C. paramedics responded to a record 138 overdose calls in a single day

Wednesday’s calls included 48 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region and 51 in Fraser Health

Ambulance crews have been busy with a record number of emergency overdose calls this Wednesday, April 21. (BC Emergency Health Services)
According to a new poll, a majority of Canadians want to see illicit drugs decriminalized. (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Majority of Canadians think it’s high time to decriminalize illicit drugs: poll

More than two-times the B.C. residents know someone who died from an overdose compared to rest of Canada

According to a new poll, a majority of Canadians want to see illicit drugs decriminalized. (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, law professor at UBC and former B.C. representative for children and youth, adds her voice to the call for a coroner’s inquest into the death of Elliot Eurchuk. (Submitted)

Call gets louder for coroner’s inquest into B.C. teen’s overdose death

Former B.C. representative for children and youth weighs in with her support

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, law professor at UBC and former B.C. representative for children and youth, adds her voice to the call for a coroner’s inquest into the death of Elliot Eurchuk. (Submitted)