As a result of a steady increase of drug overdoses in British Columbia, Canada decriminalizes 4 drugs in the western province.
Canada will allow British Columbia to conduct a three-year experiment, decriminalizing the possession of small quantities of narcotics in response to recent rises in drug overdoses. MDMA, opiates, methamphetamine, and cocaine will all be included. In April, the BC Coroners Service recorded 18 straight months in which more than 150 British Columbians were killed by toxic drugs.
The federal government of Canada said on Tuesday that it would give the province of British Columbia permission to conduct an experiment to legalize the possession of small quantities of narcotics for the purpose of reducing the incidence of fatal overdoses. The trial will run for three years.
The federally sanctioned policy does not legalize the drugs, but Canadians in British Columbia will not be detained for carrying up to 2.5 grams of narcotics for personal use. The province and campaigners had originally requested a 4.5-gram threshold from the federal government.
The three-year exception would decriminalize opiates, cocaine, methamphetamine, and MDMA for drug users aged 18 and older beginning on January 31.
Carolyn Bennett, Canada’s Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, said the British Columbia research may be used as a model in other parts of the country.
“Real-time adjustments will be made upon receiving analysis of any data that indicates a need to change,” she states.