B.C. Liberals’ election platform gives little attention to the fentanyl crisis despite deaths continuing to soar

published on April 12, 2017 by Travis Lupick in The Georgia Straight

April 14 marks the passage of one year since the provincial government declared a public-health emergency related to illicit-drug overdose deaths.

Since then, almost another 1,000 people have died, about five times the annual average of 204 deaths for the years 2001 to 2010.

The same week, the B.C. Liberals released their party platform for the upcoming provincial election (May 9), and it doesn’t include much on the crisis, candidates for the NDP and the Greens were quick to point out.

“I’m appalled,” said Selina Robinson, the NDP MLA for Coquitlam-Maillardville. “This says that they don’t care.”

Robinson told the Straight the NDP will reveal its plan for responding to the overdose crisis this Thursday (April 13).

“You’ll see our platform later this week and there will be some details in there that will shed a light on something that the B.C. Liberals and Christy Clark have left in the dark,” she said in a telephone interview.

In the Liberals’ platform, the overdose epidemic is first referenced on page 103 of 129, toward the bottom of a section on mental health.

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