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Kamloops's top cop calls for safe drug supply

FILE PHOTO - Kamloops RCMP Supt. Syd Lecky speaks with reporters on Dec. 19, 2019, at the downtown detachment.
March 09, 2021 - 3:42 PM

In his annual report to city council today, Kamloops RCMP Supt. Syd Lecky said it is time to consider a ‘safe supply’ for those experiencing drug addiction.

Lecky presented the 2020 report to council today, March 9, saying he’d like to see collaboration between different government agencies and a sweeping change to drug policies.

“Right now it seems that different ministries and authorities are working in silos. We need something, maybe a new ministry, that will bring those efforts together,” Lecky said. “We’ve got more people dying than ever right now. It seems to me that the time has come to start talking about safe supplies.”

Lecky said he would like to see “any level of government” alleviate the burden placed on police when dealing with homelessness and mental health issues.

READ MORE: Drug decriminalization isn't radical, it's already here in the Thompson-Okanagan

City council has tabled multiple motions offering solutions to homelessness and mental health issues. They include short-term options like downtown security and a call for senior levels of government to decriminalize illegal drugs, but so far they’ve stopped short of calling for a safe drug supply.

Lecky's call for a safe drug supply is in response to a growing death-toll in the opioid crisis and increasing evidence of a toxic drug supply.

READ MORE: Opioid mixtures make toxic drug supply even more dangerous in the Interior

On March 5, Interior Health renewed a region-wide drug alert until April 8. The move is abnormal, according to ASK Wellness drug technician Kile McKenna, but it is in response to a contaminated supply that is present across the region.

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