La Sociedad de Usuarios Vivos de Drogas Intravenosas (SOLID) ha desplegado programas comunitarios para apoyar a sus pares con medidas de reducción de daños e incidencia, pero la financiación pública es escasa. Más información, en inglés, está disponible abajo.

By Tyler Hooper

As a new safe consumption site opened its doors in Victoria last week, marking a new wave of government funding to battle British Columbia’s overdose crisis, drug users say their own peer-run programs are being kept at arm’s length, and may be missing out on some life-saving resources. With the largest injection site on Vancouver Island now up and running, focus has shifted to a second stream of funding, an extra $1.65 million the province allocated “for community-led responses to the opioid overdose crisis.” The announcements come in the wake of more staggering illicit drug overdoses in the province—so far there’s been 511 illicit drug overdose deaths in BC as of April 30, and Victoria has seen 39 overdose deaths already this year. The new money is undoubtedly good news; however, some peer-harm reduction groups like the Society of Living Intravenous Drug Users (SOLID) say they’re still falling short of the resources and staff they need to combat the overdose crisis—mainly because of how it’s distributed. Their main issue with funding model is outlined in a letter to the Overdose Emergency Response Centre (OERC) signed by several drug user groups, including SOLID’s programs director Jack Phillips, and the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users (VANDU).