Why the Drug User Liberation Front Gave Out Free, Checked Drugs in Vancouver

published on August 11, 2020 by Matthew Bonn in Filter

The Drug User Liberation Front, a Vancouver-based activist group, made a serious statement on June 23. During a protest in the city’s Downtown Eastside, they gave out free, checked and illegal drugs to their community. They did this in response to British Columbia’s monthly overdose death numbers reaching a then–record high of 170 in May. Over 200 people are estimated to have received small quantities of drugs, including opium and cocaine, at the event.

Given the dangerous adulteration of the drug supply, exacerbated by the pandemic, there’s a good chance that one or two lives were saved that day. All the same, wider circumstances and the structural oppression of drug users saw June reach an even higher death count in the province, as Guy Felicella of the British Columbia Centre on Substance Use (BCCSU) recently described for Filter.

According to a press release posted on the Drug User Liberation Front (DULF) Facebook page, “These drugs have been tested via FTIR [Fourier-Transform Infrared Spectroscopy] spectrometry and immunoassay and are free of fentanyl, fentanyl analogues, benzodiazepines and many other harmful adulterants.”…

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