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Canada Vancouver council unanimously endorses drug decriminalization, seeks federal approval

18:00  26 november  2020
18:00  26 november  2020 Source:   msn.com

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 At the UN, the legitimacy of the five permanent members of the Security Council questioned "The competing interests of its members and the frequent use of the right of veto have limited the effectiveness of the Security Council", recognizes in particular the President of the United Nations General Assembly. © UNITED NATIONS / AFP Volkan Bozkir, President of the UN General Assembly, in New York on September 29, 2020 United States, China, Russia, France and United Kingdom are at the heart of criticism at Nations plain .

Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart says he will ask the federal government to approve a plan to decriminalize If successful, Vancouver will become the first jurisdiction in Canada to decriminalize simple possession. City council is expected to approve a motion on decriminalization next week.

B.C. Premier John Horgan gives his regular update. ___ About: Since 1912, the Vancouver Sun has cast a watchful eye on the events, issues and politics of

VANCOUVER — Councillors in Vancouver have voted unanimously to ask the federal government to decriminalize possession of small amounts of illicit drugs.

a man standing in a room © Provided by The Canadian Press

Mayor Kennedy Stewart put forward the motion earlier this month saying it is time to develop a "health-focused" approach to substance use and end the stigma against drug users.

In a statement issued late Wednesday after the vote, Stewart thanked groups such as the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users, which he says have pursued decriminalization for years.

In the same process used to create its first supervised injection clinic almost two decades ago, city staff will now write to federal officials, including the ministers of health and justice, seeking an exemption from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.

COMMENTARY: As Vancouver’s drug crisis continues, is decriminalization the answer?

  COMMENTARY: As Vancouver’s drug crisis continues, is decriminalization the answer? Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart wants to see all drugs decriminalized, but it's not that easy, Mike Smyth argues.The call came this week from Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart, who said it makes no sense to criminally prosecute drug addicts.

" Decriminalizing harder drugs is not a step that Canada is looking at taking at this point," Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said at a town hall meeting in Edmonton last month. NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said in Vancouver last year that he supports decriminalizing personal possession of all drugs .

The Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) supports decriminalizing all drugs , not just marijuana. Our proposal for decriminalization , the Drug Policy Reform Act, takes the first steps in dismantling the federal drug war built up over the past 50 years. Read more about this model legislation.

If approved, Stewart says Vancouver will work with the police department, Vancouver Coastal Health, community groups and people who have lived experience with drug use to determine how decriminalization should be approved.

The city's support for decriminalization came on the same day the BC Coroners Service issued a report documenting 162 illicit drug deaths across the province in October, amounting to five every day, including one daily in Vancouver.

Stewart says Vancouver is ready to again lead the way on drug policy in order to save lives.

“With more than 1,500 deaths in Vancouver since a provincial overdose emergency was declared in April 2016, and an estimated 329 overdose deaths in the City of Vancouver so far this year, 2020 is on track to be the worst year yet for overdoses and this new approach is urgently needed," Stewart says in the statement.

Ex-health minister Philpott says federal government should back drug decriminalization in Vancouver

  Ex-health minister Philpott says federal government should back drug decriminalization in Vancouver Former federal health minister Jane Philpott is urging the federal government to “be bold” and approve Vancouver’s pitch to decriminalize simple possession of illicit drugs to help stem a growing tide of overdose deaths. She said the plan, which would require the federal cabinet's approval, is "a very good idea" that could save lives — although she worries about federal reluctance due to public anxieties about decriminalization. "It's certainly the direction I think we should be taking and kudos on Vancouver for having some courageous steps in that direction," she told CBC News.

VANCOUVER — As NDP leader, Jagmeet Singh would call for decriminalizing possession of all drugs for personal use, he said during a leadership debate Sunday. I would call for the decriminalization of all personal possession offences when it comes to drugs . Period.Jagmeet Singh.

DOJ Tells Prosecutors Armed Federal Agents Can Be Sent to Examine Ballot-Counting Locations to Trump Camp Files Suit in Georgia to Stop Counting Ballots After Biden Camp Seeks Volunteers to Investigate individuals on electronic voter register with 1900 birthdates. “This Felt Like a Drug Deal!”

Dr. Patricia Daly, chief medical health officer for Vancouver Coastal Health, has said decriminalization alone won't solve the drug crisis, but will complement expanded harm reduction and treatment services, including the province's safe supply program.

Decriminalization of simple possession of illicit drugs and other mesaures also have the support of Premier John Horgan, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and the Vancouver Police Department.

There's no indication how long the federal government might take to review Vancouver's plan once it is submitted, but Stewart has said federal Health Minister Patty Hajdu is a champion of harm reduction and has the authority to move quickly.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 26, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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This is interesting!