An amazing organization known as ruFEDUPca is out to advocate for some long overdue changes to the current drug policies and legislation in Canada.
What's the problem?
"Canadian Drug Policy has failed. It has failed to keep Canadian communities safe. It has failed to prevent Canadians from becoming addicted to legal and illicit drugs and it has failed to keep Canadians who use drugs safe from disease and death."
"Criminalization of drugs has exacerbated the health risks of drug use. Criminalization of drugs doesn’t keep people safe. It marginalizes people who use drugs and promotes discrimination that makes governments less willing to provide accessible and affordable drug treatment."
"We need an immediate investment in a wide range of evidence-based addictions treatment services that recognize how in many cases, addictions are a chronically relapsing condition requiring varying intensities of treatment potentially over a lifetime of struggle."
"Where we cannot support people to achieve abstinence, we must make every effort to minimize the harms associated with substance use on their health."
"Opiate substitution therapy options should be available in all communities across Canada, and where methadone or suboxone treatment is not successful - heroin assisted therapy must be implemented."
You can read more about ruFEDUPca's "Proposal for Canadian Drug Policy Reform" here. You can also view the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition's full policy brief "Opioid Overdose Prevention & Response in Canada" here, as well as the Canadian Public Health Associations discussion paper entitled "A New Approach To Managing Illegal Psychoactive Substances in Canada" here.
The woman and mastermind behind the ruFEDUPca campaign is the amazing Donna D. May. Since the loss of her daughter in the summer of 2012 due to complications of addiction, Donna has become a powerful and vocal advocate for amending current Canadian drug legislation, the implementation of harm reduction initiatives (consumption sites, needle exchanges), as well as actively raising awareness and reducing the stigma surrounding mental illness and addictions.