OTTAWA, Ontario (LifeSiteNews) — Despite the federal government’s latest Liberal policies toward hard drugs, deaths from drug overdoses in Canada continue to skyrocket with the most recent statistics from 2021 showing that they went up by a third.
According to a new Statistics Canada report released Monday, unintentional “deaths caused by accidental poisonings accounted for 7,006 deaths in 2021, an increase of 31.9 percent compared with 2020.”
According to Statistics Canada, “An accidental poisoning resulting in death occurs when a person is exposed to a noxious substance such as drugs, alcohol, carbon monoxide or pesticides.”
The vast majority of deaths were in men.
Statistics show that 95.9 percent of the deaths were from drug overdoses and accidental “poisonings rose by 32.9 percent.”
A federal policy put in place by the federal government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in May 2022 in effect decriminalized hard drugs on a trial-run basis in the province of British Columbia. While the policy was approved in 2022, it did not come into effect until February 2023.
Under the policy, the federal government began allowing people within the province to possess up to 2.5 grams of hard drugs without criminal penalty, but selling drugs remained a crime.
The policy has been widely criticized, especially after it was found that the province broke three different drug-related overdose records in the first month the new law was in effect.
Most Canadians seem to be opposed to the decriminalization of hard drugs.
Recent research, conducted by Trudeau’s own Privy Council, showed that those living in British Columbia were not favorable to allowing small drug possession.
The rise in deaths follows recent recommendations made to parliament to decriminalize heroin nationwide.
In 2019, Canada’s House of Commons Health Committee in a report suggested that the government “work with provinces, territories, municipalities, Indigenous communities and law enforcement agencies to decriminalize the simple possession of small quantities of illicit substances.”
In 2021, a federal panel made a recommendation that small possession of hard drugs be decriminalized, to take away “the stigma by labeling people who use drugs as criminals.”
Overall, 12,264 people have died from drug overdoses in British Columbia since April 2016.
Comparatively, since that same year, about 32,000 Canadians have died from a drug overdose. With a nationwide population of roughly 40 million (but only 5 million in British Columbia), the province is greatly overrepresented in such deaths.
Despite the seeming failures, Canadian MPs in a 209-113 vote in May agreed to keep in place the drug policy enacted by the Trudeau government, which ostensibly guarantees the “safe supply” of hard drugs to addicts in British Columbia.