NEW WESTMINSTER (NEWS 1130) – Transit Police say the opiod crisis is still very much a crisis in Metro Vancouver.
But, there is one statistic that appears to be positive. Transit Police are not using Naloxone as often as they were in 2017.
This year, they’re on pace to administer the fentanyl antidote 12 times, while they used it on 20 occasions last year.
Transit Police Chief Doug LePard adds he’s also seen improvements around reducing the stigma of addictions.
LISTEN: Full Ask The Chief interview with NEWS 1130’s Tim James and Transit Police Chief Doug LePard
“People are more willing to seek assistance and I know that the province is really focusing on what can be done, not only on the ground but at the macro level. I’m cautiously optimistic that we will see an improvement,” says Lepard.
“I hope that [the crisis] is improving. It’s hard to tell, you know, the numbers are relatively small so they’re subject to change.”
There’s still a long way to go, and Lepard says he’d like to see improved access to treatment resources.
“So that if we’ve got an addicted person who says, ‘I’m ready right now to go into treatment,’ then we can take them there. I think that will make a difference.”
More than 90 per cent of Transit Police officers are trained to use Naloxone.