Demand Better from the Alberta Government on Addiction Care

Alberta is in an addictions and mental health crisis. We see it in the news, on the streets, and among our friends and families.

Yet the government remains committed to an approach that isn’t working. The numbers tell the tragic tale:

Nearly 1800 people died just from opioid overdoses and poisonings from January to November;

From March 2023 to at least October 2023, there was a monthly average of one EMS call for an overdose every hour;

Every quarter last year saw the highest ever rate of Emergency Department visits for opioids.

The government has not released updated data on overdose and drug poisoning deaths since November 2023, or any data that shows their abstinence-only approach works.

I urge the provincial government to release up-to-date data on deaths caused by overdoses and start to treat addiction care as health care. That means listening to the evidence and broadening its one-size-fits-all Alberta Model to include the whole spectrum of treatment options.

Addiction care is health care, and we need to be doing everything we can to prevent overdose deaths.