As British Columbia heads into the fifth year of a public health emergency due to the high number of opioid overdose deaths, Vancouver Island still doesn’t have a single residential-treatment for youth. Province-wide, the number of youth beds and services lag demand. For youth who do get one of those precious treatment beds, their transition back to community-based services is badly planned and poorly managed.

Had all of that been in place, 16-year-old Elliot Cleveland Eurchuk might have survived his addiction rather than being counted among the 4,850 British Columbians to have died between January 2016 and Oct. 31, 2019. But the teen’s legacy could be — should be — that Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan making addictions treatment as much of a priority as harm reduction.
Read the rest of this opinion article at The Vancouver Sun…

Image: Elliot Eurchuk in a family photo. HO / THE CANADIAN PRESS