Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users says drug overdose public warnings shouldn’t come from police

Vancouver, BC, Canada / News Talk 980 CKNW | Vancouver's News. Vancouver's Talk
Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users says drug overdose public warnings shouldn't come from police

A series of suspected heroin overdoses has prompted a public warning from Vancouver Police.

Seven overdoses were recorded in the Downtown Eastside Tuesday.

No word yet whether any were fatal, but police are asking all drug users to be careful and utilize the services of the city’s supervised injection site.

They say staff at Insite are trained to spot medical distress.

The Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users says public warnings about overdoses should come from the BC Centre for Disease Control , not the police.

Co-founder Ann Livingston is upset the Vancouver Police Department is encouraging drug users to use Insite, the safe injection site, when they won’t advocate for more harm-reduction measures.

Livingston says there is up to 15-thousand injections a day, and Insite can only handle 600.

“It’s been very frustrating, seeing that the injection site has been so successful, including stopping overdoses, stopping the spread of disease, and encouraging drug treatment, that we haven’t seen more Insite’s open.”

Police also want anyone who witnesses a possible overdose to immediately call 9-1-1.



  1. Ms Livingston was obviously on drugs when she made these comments. she should be thanking the VPD for making the effort to warn her addicted friends rather than trashing them.
    That she estimates there are 15000 injections a day speaks to the need for public awareness of the drug problem in Vancouver and the need to increase the campaign against drug use.