I recently read an article by the Calgary Herald’s Licia Corbella called Vancouver’s easy drug access may have helped kill Monteith (Cory). She is obviously disgusted with Vancouver’s HR injection site, Insite, and decided to make a case against it by contriving a link to Cory’s death. This was my response:
HR (harm reduction) highlights an epidemic that justly deserves discussion. That should be the topic. Insite is more a reflection of a broad picture. As much as Vancouver is a bright spot in showing new possibilities in North America for planning and social evolution, Vancouver is also showing something born out it’s attribute of compassion. That explains why it has a government sponsored injection site called Insite. These type of HR facilities do not contribute to fatal drug overdose, they lessen the possibility including the proliferation of other disease. As for obtaining street drugs, there is unfortunately immediate wide spread availability of dangerous drugs anywhere in the U.S and Canada including Vancouver irregardless of Insite’s existence. Overdoses are common through out the U.S. and Canada and in fact an epidemic. HR injection sites are actually non-existent in North America other than Vancouver. See Insite. Harm reduction is an illumination of the tip of a great iceberg of drug addiction and abuse that plagues North America. The drive for the medicalization of addiction is highlighted in places like Vancouver and Dr. Gabor Mates’ work. What most of us do not readily see is the rest of the iceberg; the greater impact of addiction. It hides in our families, homes, our hospitals, our jails, prisons, our streets and in our morgues. Tragically young actor’s like Cory have to die in the context of a problem that is so pervasive, cunning, baffling, and powerful. The solutions will be game changers and we do not know who will lead the way; maybe places like Vancouver. More than ever, millions of parents and professionals want to see the best happen in making a difference in the bigger picture of addiction, its impact, and the flow of our common capital into the pork belly of this beast.