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Lecture 19

POLS 3140 Lecture 19: Drugs

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Political Science
POLS 3140
Dave Snow

March 28, 2017 Lecture 19 Drugs Safe Injection Sites and the SCC Timeline: o 1997: Downtown Eastside Emergency o 1999: Harm Reduction Strategy o 2003: Insite Opens o 2011: Supreme Court Decision o 2013: New Legislation Vancouvers 4 Pillar Drug Strategy 1. Prevention 2. Treatment 3. Enforcement 4. Harm Reduction Harm Reduction and the 4 Pillars Value neutral about drug uses o Focus on harm caused by substance, not user o Not based on abstinence Middle range o Between prohibitionist and legalization Other harm reduction examples? o Needle exchange, methadone clinic, tolerance zones, ecigarettes Vancouvers Safe Injection Site Opened September 21, 2003 o Operated by Portland Hotel Society and Vancouver Coastal Health Users bring own substance o Given clean materials, monitored by staff o Often referred to other health care providers Hailed as success by staff, users, medical professionals, researchers, province, city Arguments in Favour Addiction is a disease and deserves a compassionate approach Actually reduces harm o Individual: Disease, infection, overdose o Community: Crime, public disorder Traditional three pillars not working Better facilitates treatment and recovery Health issue, not criminal issue Arguments Against Moral failure giving up Enabling drug users Compromises other pillars o Prevention and enforcement especially Insite as gateway o First step to legalization Controlled Drugs and Substances Act Drug possession banned Exemption possible under s. 56
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