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Letters: Richmond mayor clarifies safe-consumption site motion

'Regrettably, drug use is a reality in every community in B.C.': Malcolm Brodie
Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie

Dear Editor,

Re: "Raucous Richmond meeting ends in vote to explore safe consumption site"

I am writing to clarify the events of Feb. 12-13 at city council when a resolution was adopted by a 7-2 vote to study the feasibility of a supervised consumption site located at the hospital in Richmond.

The issue came forward to council after 26 residents died from drug overdoses in 2023. Sadly, more will likely die this year.

The resolution did not propose that a site be established by the city, because council has no legal ability to do that. However, council wanted to investigate the viability of such a site located at the hospital and see if it would assist in mitigating our growing overdose crisis. 

If such a site was eventually approved, it would be the responsibility of Vancouver Coastal Health, which has now stated it will not open a supervised consumption site in Richmond.

There was much interest on the matter shown by residents – some against and some in support.

In the end, seven members of council supported the motion to study the feasibility of such a site.

Regrettably, drug use is a reality in every community in B.C., especially following drug decriminalization by senior government. 

However, the discussion is closed on the investigation of whether a supervised consumption site is viable here. There will be no more investigation.

In the broader perspective, I believe that by working together as a community, we can find solutions to keep Richmond the safe, vibrant, inclusive city we are proud to call home.

Malcolm Brodie

Richmond Mayor

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