Premier Christy Clark says she’s just as frustrated as everyone else when it comes to the province’s overdose crisis.
Speaking to Global News, Clark says all overdose deaths are preventable, but wheels are turning slowly.
“There are a lot of gaps in the system, and we’ve got to close those gaps… There is nobody who is more frustrated about how slow government is, and I think it’s just the nature of the way it works.”
When the topic turned to the Fentanyl crisis, Clark was asked why the government can’t just ban pill presses
Clark says B.C.’s ‘porous borders’ make it easy products to move in and out.
“We are really dependent on the Federal government to stop pill presses from coming in cross the border. The most important defense we have is going after the traffickers and putting them in jail.”
In the meantime Clark says her government is working on other solutions.
“We’re going to have about 420 new [treatment] beds up and running by early 2017, about 500 sometime later in 2017. Pill presses could be part of it, stopping the flow of drugs at the border is part of it. Dealing with traffickers very seriously and putting them in jail for as long as we can is part of it.”
Clark says there needs to be an overall solution, including public education to prevent drug use, and support after patients leave recover.
555 people died of illicit drug overdoses between January and September this year – outstripping the 508 deaths for the entirety of 2015.
The full interview with Premier Christy Clark can be watched below.