Opioids are sweeping through Canada, whether drug users know it or not.
Meredith MacKenzie/Physician, Street Health Centre:
“In the old days, maybe people could use drugs more safely… in the sense that they weren’t contaminated with things like Fentanyl.
And what we are seeing now is that that’s a big issue, drugs are contaminated quite often.”
Something parents and caregivers learned more about at a special workshop to teach them about what kids could be exposed to when taking drugs.
“I think it’s great that the community is putting this together for parents who want to understand, who want to learn, who may not even know where to go to start…So this is a good starting point and I think it’s wonderful that the health unit is doing this.”
In February alone, two young Ottawa teens died after taking fake prescription pills that had been laced with Fentanyl… and according to experts, it’s going to get worse.
“It’s typically a time of experimentation, so I don’t think anything has changed… It’s the drugs themselves that have changed.”
And that’s what local doctor’s hoped to share with the community.
To create a discussion about the risks of drug use.
“It’s absolutely important that as parents, we are informed of all the stuff that can harm them and to understand what’s out there and do what we can to protect them.”
A sentiment that the federal government is also acting on as it too works to stem the crisis.
“Right now, there is a private member bill in front of Parliament called the Good Samaritans Drug Overdose Act. The idea behind the act? To prevent legal action against anyone who calls 911 during an overdose.”
“I think that’s one of the main things that we see, is that for people, the reason they don’t call 911 is that they are fearful of police involvement and getting a record, things like that that are really relevant.”
Callie Warren, CKWS News, Kingston