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

Jenna Forster moderated the Virtual All Candidates Forum between Duck Paterson (top left); Chris Istace (top right); and Doug Routley (Youtube/Ladysmith Chamber of Commerce)
Nanaimo-North Cowichan candidates state their case in virtual debate

Duck Paterson, Chris Istace, and Doug Routley are on the ballot for October 24

Dinner shows in the Playbill Dining Room are keeping the Chemainus Theatre going during the pandemic. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Dinner events satisfying for the Chemainus Theatre and patrons

Small groups enjoy entertainment and the food in the Playbill Dining Room

The cover of the 2021 RASTA calendar. (Photo submitted)
Smashed pumpkins provide a royal Thanksgiving feast for RASTA Sanctuary animals

Substantial community donations to purchase pumpkins surpasses the initial goal

Advance polling begins on Oct. 15, 2020, across B.C. in the 2020 snap election. (Black Press files)
B.C. VOTES 2020: Advance voting begins today in Nanaimo-North Cowichan

Advance voting runs from Oct. 15 to Oct. 21 in B.C.’s election

The Nanaimo-North Cowichan candidates will take part in a virtual candidates forum hosted by the Ladysmith Chamber of Commerce and VIREB (Submitted photo)
Nanaimo-North Cowichan candidates to participate in virtual candidates forum

The forum will be hosted by the Ladysmith Chamber of Commerce and VIREB on October 19

FILE – People wait in line at a COVID-19 testing facility in Burnaby, B.C., on Thursday, August 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
167 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death recorded as B.C. enters 2nd wave

Three new healthcare outbreaks also announced

Nanaimo RCMP are asking for the public’s assistance in locating Michael Leighton, who is wanted on 11 warrants on Vancouver Island and is a suspect in a recent break, enter and theft in Nanaimo. (Photos submitted)
RCMP looking for break-and-enter suspect with 11 warrants on the Island

Nanaimo RCMP say Michael Leighton a suspect in theft of pistol and $40,000 worth of coins

This 2020 electron microscope image made available by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases shows a Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 particle isolated from a patient, in a laboratory in Fort Detrick, Md. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-NIAID/NIH via AP
At least 49 cases of COVID-19 linked to wedding in Calgary: Alberta Health

McMillan says the city of Calgary has recently seen several outbreaks linked to social gatherings

UBC geoscientists discovered the wreckage of a decades-old crash during an expedition on a mountain near Harrison Lake. (Submitted photo)
Wreckage of decades-old plane crash discovered on mountain near Harrison Lake

A team of Sts’ailes Community School students helped discover the twisted metal embedded in a glacier

The official search to locate Jordan Naterer was suspended Saturday Oct. 17. Photo courtesy of VPD.
‘I am not leaving without my son,’ says mother of missing Manning Park hiker

Family and friends continue to search for Jordan Naterer, after official efforts suspended

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A bear similar to this black bear is believed responsible for killing a llama in Saanich on Oct. 19. (Black Press Media file photo)
Bear kills llama on Vancouver Island, prompting concerns over livestock

Officers could not track the bear they feel may not fear humans

Bernard Trest and his son Max, 10, are concerned about B.C.’s plan for students in the classroom. He was one of two fathers who filed a court application in August to prevent schools from reopening if stricter COVID-19 protections weren’t in place. That application was dismissed last week. (Contributed photo)
B.C. dad pledges to appeal quashed call for mandatory masks, distancing in schools

Bernard Trest and Gary Shuster challenged health, education ministries’ return-to-school plan

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
RCMP cleared in fatal shooting of armed Lytton man in distress, police watchdog finds

IIO spoke to seven civillian witnesses and 11 police officers in coming to its decision

Most Read