These 5 myths about B.C.’s toxic drug crisis are hurting efforts to stop the deaths, say experts

published on February 11, 2022 by Bethany Lindsay in CBC News

In the five years and 10 months since B.C. declared a public health emergency because of drug-related deaths, the problem has only gotten worse.

Statistics released by the B.C. Coroners Service this week confirmed that 2,224 lives were lost in 2021, making it the deadliest year on record.

Advocates argue part of the problem is that many people with the power to make a difference are relying on outdated or incorrect ideas.

“People don’t want to actually confront some serious realities here, and so these comforting lies are embraced in many ways. It’s horrible because it prevents all of us from actually addressing this in a real way,” said Karen Ward, a drug policy consultant with the City of Vancouver.

To get a better handle on some of the misconceptions, CBC spoke to experts who are experiencing the crisis from three different viewpoints: Leslie McBain, co-founder of Moms Stop the Harm, chief coroner Lisa LaPointe, and Ward…

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