Wednesday, July 19, 2023
On the 11th month of running its Compassion Club, the Drug User Liberation Front (DULF) distributes a regulated and tested supply of heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine, to the membership of the Coalition of Peers Dismantling the Drug War (CPDDW), as part of the DULF’s DoA Program.
For the 18th time, a community-regulated supply of substances was distributed to commemorate the 184 people who passed away in June 2023, the CPDDW and DULF distributed 3.5 free grams of each cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine to CPDDW’s membership.
Vancouver, BC – DULF is currently on month 11 of running its unsanctioned and illicit fifty person evaluative Compassion Club and Fulfillment Centre, with the goal of combatting overdose deaths in Vancouver’s DTES. Almost a full year into its operation, there has not been a single overdose fatality from the substances that have been distributed to the Compassion Club’s membership. DULF’s substances have been tested via PS-MS, NMR, and HPLC testing, and do not contain fentanyl, benzodiazepines, or other harmful cuts, buffs, and adulterants.
In yet another effort to show that evidence-based harm reduction works, DULF also continues to run its Dope Arrival (DoA) Program; via this program the DULF distributes free tested drugs each time the coroner announces updated numbers of overdose fatalities. July 19th, 2023 marks the 18th giveaway of such substances, and was done in partnership with Vancouver’s CPDDW with the goal of showing the potential for a life-saving community-led response to the declared public health emergency in BC, that could stem the escalating overdose deaths rates across Canada with sanctioning.
“The increase in toxic drugs makes for challenging overdoses, which increases the likelihood of death. Regulated supply, such as DULF’s, which is community based, proves that having a regulated and tested supply of drugs prevents death. The government has failed to prevent more tragedies in their unwillingness to create more programs similar to DULF’s Compassion Club Model.”
-Kali Sedgemore, CPDDW President
Nevertheless, and despite our best efforts, the situation for people who use drugs in BC is becoming increasingly grim. The iron law of prohibition is such that, without intervention, the illicit drug market will become more toxic, more potent, and more dangerous, with newer novel substances being cut into the illicit drug supply as time goes on. This problem is being exacerbated by current lifesaving programs being scaled back (e.g. dilaudid safer supply) – further pushing people who use drugs onto the illicit street supply. As scripts are pulled and people once again turn to fentanyl, we ask for help from all levels of government, in this the 7th year of a public health crisis. If we are to continue saving lives, the time is now for action and innovation, not for the rhetoric of conservative anecdotes and the reiteration of policy stagnancy. As we see in Alberta, the lack of a full continuum of care leads to one place – death.
There is not them and us.
There is only you and me.
The war on drugs is oblivion.