Members of the British Columbia Legislative Assembly (MLA) call for an end to the war on drugs. Adam Olsen (MLA), says he will continue to lobby for a safe drug supply. The authorities need a new approach when it comes to the effects of illegal substances on public health.
Olsen: “We have to overcome the stigma. We must recognize that it doesn't matter whether drugs are legal or not. The reality is that people have access to drugs and that the illegal stock is often adulterated with exceptionally dangerous, toxic substances.”
Olsen made these comments last week after he publicly revealed that he used cocaine in his youth. Olsen said he will use his role to continue urging the government to move towards regulated secure sourcing with much greater urgency. “The most important step in policy is to make sure people who need help get it before it's too late.”
7000 drug deaths in British Colombia
“Right now we have a stockpile of toxic illegal drugs,” he said. “We have seen that the current approach has failed. 7.000 British Colombians have died in the past six years. That is a really shocking situation.” During his speech to the legislature in the spring, Olsen called on the government to give people access to controlled stockpiles.
Olsen has also in the past urged the county to lobby the federal government to decriminalize personal possession of small amounts of drugs, citing a 2019 report by county health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, advising the county “to urgently decriminalize people who possess controlled drugs. Substances for personal use.”
In this way, Olsen represents many individuals and institutions who are calling on federal authorities to decriminalize illegal drugs. While the federal government has not made any specific promises, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's recently announced cabinet includes a new ministry for mental health and addictions. A breath of fresh air with perhaps a new policy.
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