overdose crisis

Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users president Lorna Bird says her dog Joy can tell when someone is overdosing. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)

Overdose detecting dogs save lives, lift spirits in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside

When someone overdoses at VANDU, pups Guess and Joy are quick to alert the nearest human

 

A man pauses at a coffin after carrying it during a memorial march to remember victims of overdose deaths in Vancouver on Saturday, August 15, 2020. The B.C. Coroners Service reported a record number of 175 overdose deaths related to illicit drugs in June. Approximately 5,000 people have died due to illicit-drug overdoses since a public health emergency was declared in 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

EDITORIAL: Drug overdose deaths an ongoing problem in B.C.

Deaths from illicit drug use has been identified as a public health emergency since 2016

  • May 11, 2022

 

Moms Stop the Harm advocates and supporters gather at Centennial Square on the sixth anniversary to mark the public health emergency of the declaration due to the significant increase in opioid-related overdose across the province during the Cut The Red Tape theme in Victoria, Thursday, April 14, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

Pandemic impacted quality of illicit drugs and ‘contaminants’ in B.C., new study shows

A new study surveyed 738 people who use drugs and found 272 people reported worsening drug quality

 

Grieving mother Nicola Hill who lost her son to an accidental overdose spoke at last year's event held in Gyro Park. (Jesse Day Western News file photo)

Event in downtown Penticton marks 6th year of rising overdose deaths

Speakers, Naloxone training and lunch offered at Elks hall at noon April 14

Grieving mother Nicola Hill who lost her son to an accidental overdose spoke at last year's event held in Gyro Park. (Jesse Day Western News file photo)
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions Sheila Malcolmson speaks during a press conference in the press gallery at the Legislature in Victoria, Monday, Nov. 1, 2021. In the absence of a national policy on personal drug possession, some Canadian jurisdictions have submitted requests for exemptions from criminal penalties for those who carry small amounts of illicit drugs for personal use. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

Jurisdictions looking to decriminalize small amounts of drugs to curb overdose deaths

Canadian cities, provinces say decriminalization would help reduce stigma associated with drug use

Minister of Mental Health and Addictions Sheila Malcolmson speaks during a press conference in the press gallery at the Legislature in Victoria, Monday, Nov. 1, 2021. In the absence of a national policy on personal drug possession, some Canadian jurisdictions have submitted requests for exemptions from criminal penalties for those who carry small amounts of illicit drugs for personal use. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
People hold banners during a march to remember those who died during the overdose crisis and to call for a safe supply of illicit drugs on International Overdose Awareness Day, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, August 31, 2021. British Columbia’s chief coroner says at least 1,011 people died from suspected illicit drug overdoses from January to June, the highest death toll recorded in the first six months of a calendar year during the province’s overdose crisis. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Safe-supply pilot project findings promising, but advocates say more action is needed

The programs are small and have very limited capacity to prescribe a safe supply of drugs

People hold banners during a march to remember those who died during the overdose crisis and to call for a safe supply of illicit drugs on International Overdose Awareness Day, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, August 31, 2021. British Columbia’s chief coroner says at least 1,011 people died from suspected illicit drug overdoses from January to June, the highest death toll recorded in the first six months of a calendar year during the province’s overdose crisis. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
A handheld device showing the loading screen for the Alberta Digital Overdose Response System mobile application is shown alongside a pair of Narcan nasal injectors in a photo illustration in Toronto, Monday, Dec. 6, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Giordano Ciampini

‘Maddening, heartbreaking’: Alberta records deadliest year for drug overdoses in 2021

Most fatal overdoses are linked to opioids and took place in Calgary and Edmonton

A handheld device showing the loading screen for the Alberta Digital Overdose Response System mobile application is shown alongside a pair of Narcan nasal injectors in a photo illustration in Toronto, Monday, Dec. 6, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Giordano Ciampini
Ray Corbiere holds a picture of his son Joshua Corbiere in Edmonton on Wednesday, March 16, 2022. A father’s hope turned to pain in less than 24 hours after his son entered a residential drug treatment facility and fatally overdosed. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

‘Death trap’: Front-line workers warn of drug overdoses rising on and off the streets

Drug overdose deaths in Alberta hit record highs during the COVID-19 pandemic

Ray Corbiere holds a picture of his son Joshua Corbiere in Edmonton on Wednesday, March 16, 2022. A father’s hope turned to pain in less than 24 hours after his son entered a residential drug treatment facility and fatally overdosed. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health Carolyn Bennett at a news conference after the federal cabinet was sworn in, in Ottawa, on Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang

Scrap thresholds in requests to decriminalize simple drug possession: coalition

To date, British Columbia, Toronto and Vancouver have asked Ottawa for section 56 exemption request

Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health Carolyn Bennett at a news conference after the federal cabinet was sworn in, in Ottawa, on Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
People hold banners during a march to remember those who died during the overdose crisis and to call for a safe supply of illicit drugs on International Overdose Awareness Day, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, August 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

6 people died per day from B.C.’s toxic drug supply last year

B.C. recorded 2,224 fatalities due to illicit drug overdoses in 2021

People hold banners during a march to remember those who died during the overdose crisis and to call for a safe supply of illicit drugs on International Overdose Awareness Day, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, August 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Penticton Fire truck in action. (Contributed)

350 in 2021: Penticton fire crews see significant increase in overdose calls

Police and bylaw also overwhelmed with mental health and addictions issues

Penticton Fire truck in action. (Contributed)
Tools of the trade: Crushed painkiller pills with open bottle, aluminum foil, spoon, lighter and syringe. ADOBE STOCK IMAGE

SCARED STRAIGHT: Overdose episode turns B.C. man’s life around

‘Usually, you just go to sleep… wake up later and you’re fine. But this night I wasn’t.’

Tools of the trade: Crushed painkiller pills with open bottle, aluminum foil, spoon, lighter and syringe. ADOBE STOCK IMAGE
Oona Krieg, chief operating officer of Brave Technology Co-op, poses for a photograph in Vancouver on Thursday, Jan. 6, 2022. Almost three dozen people survived overdoses because of a Canada-wide phone line that connects callers who use drugs with emergency support if there is a suspected overdose. Looking back on a year in service, data from the National Overdose Response Service, or NORS, shows all 33 potentially life-threatening events were successfully responded to. Followup calls confirmed all overdoses were reversed. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Connection during isolation: Data shows national drug overdose hotline saves lives

The national line is one of many solutions to try to curb drug overdoses

Oona Krieg, chief operating officer of Brave Technology Co-op, poses for a photograph in Vancouver on Thursday, Jan. 6, 2022. Almost three dozen people survived overdoses because of a Canada-wide phone line that connects callers who use drugs with emergency support if there is a suspected overdose. Looking back on a year in service, data from the National Overdose Response Service, or NORS, shows all 33 potentially life-threatening events were successfully responded to. Followup calls confirmed all overdoses were reversed. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
A woman walks past a person using a glass pipe to smoke drugs in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, on International Overdose Awareness Day on Tuesday, August 31, 2021. Researchers in British Columbia say the expansion of overdose prevention sites in Vancouver led to immediate behaviour changes among some drug users as they entered addiction treatment, decreased the number of times they injected substances in public and shared syringes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

UBC study says more overdose prevention sites could mean fewer overdose deaths

Researchers says existing sites having positive influence on drug users’ behaviour

A woman walks past a person using a glass pipe to smoke drugs in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, on International Overdose Awareness Day on Tuesday, August 31, 2021. Researchers in British Columbia say the expansion of overdose prevention sites in Vancouver led to immediate behaviour changes among some drug users as they entered addiction treatment, decreased the number of times they injected substances in public and shared syringes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
The Yukon provincial flag flies on a flag pole in Ottawa, Monday July 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

Yukon’s illicit overdose death toll now highest in Canada: coroner

Opioid fatalities now represent over 20 per cent of all deaths investigated by Yukon’s coroner

The Yukon provincial flag flies on a flag pole in Ottawa, Monday July 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
From January until the end of September 2021, a total of 1,534 overdose deaths were recorded in British Columbia. (Black Press file photo)

EDITORIAL: A health emergency continues to rage

Illicit drug overdose deaths are a serious problem throughout British Columbia

  • Nov 24, 2021
From January until the end of September 2021, a total of 1,534 overdose deaths were recorded in British Columbia. (Black Press file photo)
People hold banners during a march to remember those who died during the overdose crisis and to call for a safe supply of illicit drugs on International Overdose Awareness Day, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, August 31, 2021. According to the latest information from the BC Coroners Service there have been no deaths reported at supervised consumption or drug overdose prevention sites.
(THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)

Penticton sees 3 fatal overdoses in 2 months

Information from the BC Coroners Service paints a grim picture in Penticton

People hold banners during a march to remember those who died during the overdose crisis and to call for a safe supply of illicit drugs on International Overdose Awareness Day, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, August 31, 2021. According to the latest information from the BC Coroners Service there have been no deaths reported at supervised consumption or drug overdose prevention sites.
(THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
Paramedics and firefighters, along with police, help with an overdose last year in Penticton. (File photo)

Penticton on track to break fatal overdose record

The local health area has seen 15 fatal overdoses so far

Paramedics and firefighters, along with police, help with an overdose last year in Penticton. (File photo)
Paramedics and firefighters, along with police, help with an overdose last year in Penticton. (File photo)

5 fatal overdoses in 2 months brings total to 15 deaths in Penticton this year

The 5 recent overdose deaths occurred in May and June

Paramedics and firefighters, along with police, help with an overdose last year in Penticton. (File photo)
Data: BC Coroners Service

Kelowna overdose deaths 4th-highest in B.C. over the last decade

Across the province, illicit drug toxicity death rates remain high for all health authorities

Data: BC Coroners Service