Chelsa Meadus, BC Liberal candidate for the riding of Maple Ridge-Mission, listens to Leader Andrew Wilkinson, as he addresses the topic of drug addiction during a campaign stop in Pitt Meadows on Thursday. (Colleen Flanagan/The News)

BC Liberal Leader talks drug addiction in the Lower Mainland

Drug addiction and public safety a top priority says Andrew Wilkinson

BC Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson addressed the issue of drug addiction and public safety today during a campaign stop in Pitt Meadows.

Saying this would be one of the top priorities for his party, he didn’t mention exactly how the BC Liberals plan to tackle the problem.

Flanked by Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows candidate Cheryl Ashlie and Chelsa Meadus, candidate for Maple Ridge-Mission, Wilkinson started by acknowledging the record number of people in the province who have died from a drug overdose this year.

As of the end of July the number of deaths from illicit drugs in B.C. topped 900.

Wilkinson said not enough is being done to combat the problem.

“We’ve seen the ravages of drug addiction and the people who suffer from drug addiction right here in Maple Ridge. The NDP’s approach has basically been to provide nothing more than a roof over people’s heads,” said Wilkinson outside The Pitt Meadows Seniors Activity Centre along 119B Avenue.

RELATED: Fatal overdoses continue to spike in B.C. as July sees 175 illicit drug deaths

“It’s warehousing people. It doesn’t work,” he said.

Wilkinson talked about needing more effective approaches to deal with the issues related to people suffering from drug addiction.

“If it’s your sister, your mother, your daughter, you would want something to be done to assist a person with drug addiction to get off the drugs,” continued Wilkinson.

RELATED: Maple Ridge overdoses spike in first half of 2020

“We also need to talk about prevention because not nearly enough is being done in that regard,” he said, adding he would have more to say about that next week.

Wilkinson concluded by saying in order to prevent the harm you’ve got to treat the cause, which he said, applies to people with drug addiction, homelessness and to the level of growing crime in the province.

Wilkinson’s visit came on the heals of BC NDP Leader John Horgan, who was at the CEED Centre earlier in the day to announce his promise of more $10 per day child care spaces aimed at benefiting middle and low-income families.

Wilkinson has been critical of Horgan calling a snap election in the middle of a pandemic, calling it a “power grab”.


 

cflanagan@mapleridgenews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

BC politicsBC Votes 2020Pitt Meadows

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

BC Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson talks about drug addiction during a campaign stop in Pitt Meadows Thursday afternoon. (Colleen Flanagan/The News)

BC Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson talks about drug addiction during a campaign stop in Pitt Meadows Thursday afternoon. (Colleen Flanagan/The News)

Just Posted

Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP, giving an update on the investigation at 11:30 a.m., Oct. 30. Patrick Penner photo.
VIDEO: Prisoner convicted of first-degree murder still at large from Mission Institution, could be in U.S.

When 10 p.m. count was conducted, staff discovered Roderick Muchikekwanape had disappeared

web
Mission’s first cannabis store to open doors next week

Government-run BC Cannabis Store to open Nov. 4 at 31956 Lougheed Highway

The City of Chilliwack says there’s too much spitting going on at the Sardis Sports Complex. (City of Chilliwack photo)
Too much spitting a problem at Chilliwack’s Sardis Sports Complex

The City of Chilliwack is asking the minor hockey community to ease up on expectorating

Record-low returns of salmon have been recorded on the Fraser River in recent years. (Fisheries and Oceans Canada)
Time for Indigenous-led salmon strategy on the Lower Fraser, says Alliance

‘Closures of First Nations, commercial and recreational salmon fishing’ have huge impact: LFFA

Among the pumpkin carvings created this year by Rick Chong of Abbotsford is this tribute to fallen officer Cont. Allan Young.
Abbotsford pumpkin carver’s creations include fallen police officer

Rick Chong carves and displays 30 pumpkins every year

Physical distancing signs are a common sight in B.C. stores and businesses. THE CANADIAN PRESS
272 more COVID-19 cases for B.C., outbreak at oil sands project

Three new health care outbreaks, three declared over

A Mercedes SUV is covered at a gas station in the Clayton area following a deadly shooting there on Sept. 28, 2019. (File photo)
This house at 414 Royal Ave. became notorious for its residents’ and visitors’ penchant for attracting police. It was also the site of a gruesome torture in August 2018. It was demolished in 2019. KTW
6-year sentence for Kamloops man who helped carve ‘rat’ into flesh of fellow gang member

Ricky Dennis was one of three men involved in the August 2018 attack

An online fundraising campaign in support of the six-year-old boy, Edgar Colby, who was hit by a car on Range Road Oct. 25 has raised more than $62,000 in a day. (Submitted)
$62K raised in 1 day for boy in coma at BC Children’s after being hit by vehicle in Yukon

The boy’s aunt says the family is “very grateful” for the support they’ve received from the community

Health care employees take extensive precautions when working with people infected or suspected of having COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
WorkSafeBC disallows majority of COVID-19 job injury claims

Health care, social services employees filing the most claims

Vancouver Symphony Orchestra Maestro Otto Tausk. (Photo: vancouversymphony.ca)
50/50 lotto players buck up for Metro Vancouver musicians hit hard by COVID

‘Rapidly growing jackpot’ for VSO’s 50/50 draw as they go online with TheConcertHall.ca

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole rises during Question Period in the House of Commons in Ottawa on Wednesday October 28, 2020. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)
Conversion therapy ban gets approval in principle, exposes Conservative divisions

Erin O’Toole himself voted in favour of the bill, as did most Conservative MPs

CBSA. (Black Press Media File)
4 sentenced in B.C. steroid smuggling, distribution ring that spilled into U.S.

Canadian Border Services Agency announced the results of a lengthy investigation it called ‘Project Trajectory’

Search and Rescue Technicians carry a stretcher to the CH149 Cormorant during a 442 Squadron Search and Rescue Exercise in Tofino on February 28. (Photo by: Cpl Joey Beaudin, 19 Wing Imaging, Comox)
Father and son found dead after weeklong search near Pemberton

The father and son had set out for a day of mushroom picking last Thursday

Most Read