In B.C., ‘immediate action’ on opioid crisis is open to political interpretation

published on April 27, 2017 by Andrea Woo in The Globe and Mail

British Columbia’s major party leaders exchanged jabs on the issue of the overdose crisis during this week’s televised debate, citing money spent – and not spent – as an indication of progress to date. But were their comments accurate?

Responding to a question on what each candidate would do to address the crisis, NDP Leader John Horgan said his party would take “immediate action,” suggesting the BC Liberals to date have not.

“Safe injection sites, critically important; enforcement, to make sure that fentanyl’s not coming into the country; and working with the federal government, taking that $10-million that was in the federal budget and deploying it,” Mr. Horgan said.

Other funding includes around $17-million for B.C.’s health authorities, $10-million for the Joint Task Force on Overdose Response and $12-million for the B.C. Centre on Substance Use. Another $5.5-million is set aside for the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General’s gangs-and-guns strategy.

The $10-million provided by the federal government is also included in the $100-million figure.

View the full article