Injection site lies

So the conservatives have started sending around this flier which very subtly uses language to undermine the Insite injection site and harm reduction strategies. It also, of course, misleads the public about the course of action that is effective in addressing drug use. Pumping billions of dollars into a 3 decades old “drug war” that has seen drug use increase and narcotics become more available and cheaper, is portrayed as the only effective answer.

It is a fear based approach more and more people are starting to question. For example, in this piece, Mark Easton of the BBC charts how the war on drugs has actually helped grow the drug industry in the UK.

So in order to help fight the disinformation of the Conservative machine, I’ve taken a quick stab at highlighting some of the fliers problems.

Update: Turns out that the Vancouver Sun has deemed this news worthy as well. 24 hours after this post they published this story.

12 thoughts on “Injection site lies

  1. Tommy.R

    I actually appreciate Harper being straight up. Junkies need to be locked up in a treatment facility to dry out.Doing anything else won’t resolve the issue. The only way to solve this issue is to force junkies to dry out.

    Reply
  2. jeremyvernon

    Those with the most to talk about discuss results; such as supporters of the safe injection sites who talk about the scientifically backed results demonstrating that safe-injection facilities do what they’re supposed to.The Conservatives of course, can’t discuss this because they have none; so they talk about their action – as if the Tories are literally taking addicts and dealer off the street. That’s par for course being arrogant and disingenuous is a cornerstone of Conservative propaganda.@Tommy. R. – Being unabashedly ignorant of fact and filled with raging hatred for “them junkies” is hardly something that should be given praise. Further, your statement regarding the lock-up/dry-out strategy shows you last reviewed the science on this matter during the mid-1960’s. Addiction recovery is a question of motivation management – not too dissimilar from treatment of depression (addiction usually causes the latter). Prison-style-dry-out clinics can’t help but cement the depression and dispair that led people to choose addictive street drugs in the first place. In effect it makes the underlying motivation for drug-use worse; not better and exacerbates the problem.

    Reply
  3. David Eaves

    Tommy R – thank you for illustrating the problems of the Conservative position (actions vs. science).

    On the surface locking up “junkies” and forcing them to “dry out” sounds like a plausible strategy. Until withe look at the evidence. The critical assumption in this statement is that it is impossible, or at least difficult, to access drugs from in prison. Sadly, this is simply not the case. Consider these facts from various studies summarized by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse (an independent institute created while Brian Mulroney was PM)

    “- Prisons house the highest per-capita proportion of persons with substance abuse problems in society. Drugs are available in prison. Studies examining rates of substance use indicate that the per capita use of drugs in Canada’s prisons is substantially higher than on the street. In addition, drug trade is also much more violent in prison than it is on the street.
    – Indeed, alcohol and other drugs are available to some extent in virtually every correctional jurisdiction in the world. An interview study of 317 federal prisoners in Quebec revealed that 33% had used alcohol or other drugs at least once during the preceding three months.
    – Despite extensive efforts to limit or eliminate drugs in prisons, alcohol and other drugs continue to be seized, and offenders are discovered to be intoxicated (“condition other than normal”), test positive for various drugs on urinalysis screening, and report on surveys and questionnaires that they use drugs while in prison.
    – In Canada, CSC’s Security Division annual report for 2003 indicated that just over 11% of offenders test positive for drugs through the Service’s random urinalysis program.

    Tommy, I know that facts and logic usually don’t win arguments and even more rarely win elections. So for those reading this blog let me ask this. If your sister or brother was a hard drug user – would you prefer a harm reduction approach that science has shown improves our odds of success? Or would you prefer throwing them in jail where they can hang out with hardened criminals and still access drugs? These brothers, sisters and parents chose the former.

    Reply
  4. David Eaves

    Tommy R – thank you for illustrating the problems of the Conservative position (actions vs. science).On the surface locking up “junkies” and forcing them to “dry out” sounds like a plausible strategy – until we look at the evidence. Your suggestion rests on an important assumption: that it is impossible, or at least difficult, to access drugs from in prison. Sadly, this is not the case. Consider these facts compiled from various studies by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse (an independent institute created by the Mulroney government)

    Prisons house the highest per-capita proportion of persons with substance abuse problems in society. Drugs are available in prison. Studies examining rates of substance use indicate that the per capita use of drugs in Canada’s prisons is substantially higher than on the street. In addition, drug trade is also much more violent in prison than it is on the street.
    Indeed, alcohol and other drugs are available to some extent in virtually every correctional jurisdiction in the world. An interview study of 317 federal prisoners in Quebec revealed that 33% had used alcohol or other drugs at least once during the preceding three months.
    Despite extensive efforts to limit or eliminate drugs in prisons, alcohol and other drugs continue to be seized, and offenders are discovered to be intoxicated (“condition other than normal”), test positive for various drugs on urinalysis screening, and report on surveys and questionnaires that they use drugs while in prison.
    In Canada, CSC’s Security Division annual report for 2003 indicated that just over 11% of offenders test positive for drugs through the Service’s random urinalysis program.

    Tommy, I know that facts and logic usually don’t win arguments and even more rarely win elections. So for those reading this blog let me ask this. If your sister or brother became a hard drug user would you prefer a harm reduction approach that science has shown improves their odds of success? Or would you prefer throwing them in jail where they can hang out with hardened criminals and still access drugs?
    These brothers, sisters and parents chose the former.

    Reply
  5. David Eaves

    Tommy R – thank you for illustrating the problems of the Conservative position (actions vs. science).On the surface locking up “junkies” and forcing them to “dry out” sounds like a plausible strategy – until we look at the evidence. Your suggestion rests on an important assumption: that it is impossible, or at least difficult, to access drugs from in prison. Sadly, this is not the case. Consider these facts compiled from various studies by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse (an independent institute created by the Mulroney government)

    – Prisons house the highest per-capita proportion of persons with substance abuse problems in society. Drugs are available in prison. Studies examining rates of substance use indicate that the per capita use of drugs in Canada’s prisons is substantially higher than on the street. In addition, drug trade is also much more violent in prison than it is on the street.
    – Indeed, alcohol and other drugs are available to some extent in virtually every correctional jurisdiction in the world. An interview study of 317 federal prisoners in Quebec revealed that 33% had used alcohol or other drugs at least once during the preceding three months. – Despite extensive efforts to limit or eliminate drugs in prisons, alcohol and other drugs continue to be seized, and offenders are discovered to be intoxicated (“condition other than normal”), test positive for various drugs on urinalysis screening, and report on surveys and questionnaires that they use drugs while in prison. – In Canada, CSC’s Security Division annual report for 2003 indicated that just over 11% of offenders test positive for drugs through the Service’s random urinalysis program.

    Tommy, I know that facts and logic usually don’t win arguments and even more rarely win elections. So for those reading this blog let me ask this. If your sister or brother became a hard drug user would you prefer a harm reduction approach that science has shown improves their odds of success? Or would you prefer throwing them in jail where they can hang out with hardened criminals and still access drugs?
    These brothers, sisters and parents chose the former.

    Reply
  6. David Eaves

    Tommy R – thank you for illustrating the problems of the Conservative position (actions vs. science).On the surface locking up “junkies” and forcing them to “dry out” sounds like a plausible strategy – until we look at the evidence. Your suggestion rests on an important assumption: that it is impossible, or at least difficult, to access drugs from in prison. Sadly, this is not the case. Consider these facts compiled from various studies by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse (an independent institute created by the Mulroney government)

    – Prisons house the highest per-capita proportion of persons with substance abuse problems in society. Drugs are available in prison. Studies examining rates of substance use indicate that the per capita use of drugs in Canada’s prisons is substantially higher than on the street. In addition, drug trade is also much more violent in prison than it is on the street.- Indeed, alcohol and other drugs are available to some extent in virtually every correctional jurisdiction in the world. An interview study of 317 federal prisoners in Quebec revealed that 33% had used alcohol or other drugs at least once during the preceding three months. – Despite extensive efforts to limit or eliminate drugs in prisons, alcohol and other drugs continue to be seized, and offenders are discovered to be intoxicated (“condition other than normal”), test positive for various drugs on urinalysis screening, and report on surveys and questionnaires that they use drugs while in prison. – In Canada, CSC’s Security Division annual report for 2003 indicated that just over 11% of offenders test positive for drugs through the Service’s random urinalysis program.

    Tommy, I know that facts and logic usually don’t win arguments and even more rarely win elections. So for those reading this blog let me ask this. If your sister or brother became a hard drug user would you prefer a harm reduction approach that science has shown improves their odds of success? Or would you prefer throwing them in jail where they can hang out with hardened criminals and still access drugs?These brothers, sisters and parents chose the former.

    Reply
  7. david_a_eaves

    Tommy R – thank you for illustrating the problems of the Conservative position (actions vs. science).On the surface locking up “junkies” and forcing them to “dry out” sounds like a plausible strategy – until we look at the evidence. Your suggestion rests on an important assumption: that it is impossible, or at least difficult, to access drugs from in prison. Sadly, this is not the case. Consider these facts compiled from various studies by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse (an independent institute created by the Mulroney government)

    – Prisons house the highest per-capita proportion of persons with substance abuse problems in society. Drugs are available in prison. Studies examining rates of substance use indicate that the per capita use of drugs in Canada’s prisons is substantially higher than on the street. In addition, drug trade is also much more violent in prison than it is on the street.- Indeed, alcohol and other drugs are available to some extent in virtually every correctional jurisdiction in the world. An interview study of 317 federal prisoners in Quebec revealed that 33% had used alcohol or other drugs at least once during the preceding three months. – Despite extensive efforts to limit or eliminate drugs in prisons, alcohol and other drugs continue to be seized, and offenders are discovered to be intoxicated (“condition other than normal”), test positive for various drugs on urinalysis screening, and report on surveys and questionnaires that they use drugs while in prison. – In Canada, CSC’s Security Division annual report for 2003 indicated that just over 11% of offenders test positive for drugs through the Service’s random urinalysis program.

    Tommy, I know that facts and logic usually don’t win arguments and even more rarely win elections. So for those reading this blog let me ask this. If your sister or brother became a hard drug user would you prefer a harm reduction approach that science has shown improves their odds of success? Or would you prefer throwing them in jail where they can hang out with hardened criminals and still access drugs?These brothers, sisters and parents chose the former.

    Reply
  8. Brenton

    I’m sure you saw this today: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RT…I miss the logic in this: Mr. Clement said Vancouver’s Insite safe-injection centre has done little to reduce drug overdose deaths because most narcotics are still used in “back alleys and seedy motels.”So Insite shouldn’t be supported because it hasn’t done away with public drug use? Okay, following that leap of logic, let’s expand Insite until all drug use is done in safe, monitored facilities.

    Reply
  9. jeremyvernon

    The name Tony Clement has somewhat of a storied history here at UofT – so it’s unsurprising he’s as ridiculous now as ever.Is anyone else totally incredulous at the gall of this lawyer-politician questioning the ethics of a 79% majority of what is essentially the arbiter of medical ethics in Canada?

    Reply

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