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Last week, the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police called for the decriminalization of drug possession for personal use. 

They add their voice to a chorus of policy experts and activists who point to evidence that shows that treating drugs and addiction as a public health issue rather than a criminal justice one saves lives.

This call to action comes at a time when more people in B.C. are dying from a poisoned drug supply than at any point since a public health emergency was declared in 2016. Overdose deaths among Indigenous people in B.C. increased by 93 per cent between January and May over the same period last year.

This tragic worsening of the overdose crisis is intertwined with the COVID-19 pandemic. The tainted drug supply has only gotten more concentrated with border closures. And more people are using alone due to physical distancing measures and the closure of shelters and facilities.

Our experience with COVID-19 shows that we can make dramatic changes to respond to a public health crisis. How can we muster a similar energy to address another ongoing health crisis that touches all levels of society?

Calls for safe supply and decriminalization are gaining traction, but what do they really mean and look like? And how do we make them happen?

Join us for a conversation about drug policies, the overdose crisis and its relationship with COVID-19.

You will hear from….

  • Garth Mullins - the host and executive producer of CRACKDOWN, a podcast about drugs, drug policy and the drug war led by drug user activists and supported by research.
  • Dr. Mark Lysyshyn works for Vancouver Coastal Health as Deputy Chief Medical Health Officer and Medical Health Officer for Vancouver and the North Shore. He has been co-leading the public health response to the COVID-19 and overdose emergencies.
  • Angel Gates - a facilitator with Megaphone Speakers Bureau from the Haida Nation.
  • Susan Boyd, PhD is a Distinguished Professor in the Faculty of Human and Social Development at the University of Victoria and sits on the policy committee of the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition. Susan is the author of Busted: An Illustrated History of Drug Prohibition in Canada.

With moderation from Am Johal - the Director of SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement and co-Director of SFU’s Community-Engaged Research Initiative.

DID YOU MISS IT?

Watch the recordings and read a summary of the event on our blog: Key points from a conversation about the overdose crisis and COVID-19

When

July 23, 2020

12:00 - 1:15 PM

Where

Online Event
A link and password to join the event will be sent to registrants via Eventbrite.

ACCESSIBILITY, TECHNOLOGY AND PRIVACY

Registration and Password

A password to access this webinar will be sent to all registrants via email in the days and hours preceeding the event.

Technology requirements

This workshop will be presented in a participatory webinar format. To engage fully you will need:

  • A laptop, computer, or smartphone
  • A webcam
  • A microphone
  • Speakers or headphones

Protecting your privacy

To ensure that we are using online meeting technology in a privacy-conscious way, we are following best practices for this online event series:

  • We will only circulate the meeting link to those who are registered for the event
  • We will password protect the meeting
  • We will enable end-to-end encryption
  • We will not use attention tracking
  • We will lock the meeting at 12:10pm
  • We will ask that participants use their first and last name as their display name on the webinar, so we can check incoming participants against the event registration list

To protect your own privacy we suggest that:

  • You use a unique email address to log into the webinar. This is so that the webinar platform can’t cross-reference your profile with the rest of your digital profiles under your email address.
  • We suggest you do not use your Facebook profile to log into the webinar. This is so that the webinar platform can’t cross-reference you with your Facebook account.
  • We remind you that whatever you say in the webinar is public and recorded, so please do not share sensitive information about yourself or others, and do not say anything you do not wish to enter the public domain.

To protect the privacy of others we ask that:

  • You do not record or photograph yourself, other participants, or the hosts during the webinar, unless permission is requested and given.

We also ask that you respect our community guidelines:

  • Be as present as possible (turn video on, put away phone, close/mute tabs).
  • Thoughtful questions are welcome in the chat throughout the session. If your question is for a particular speaker, type “@name” at the beginning.
  • Don’t assume pronouns/gender/knowledge based on someone’s name or video image. We can refer to people using the usernames they provide!
  • Step up, step back: if you’ve asked a question or shared a comment, ensure that new voices are heard before you contribute again.
  • Practice self-care: if you need to get up or take a break, please feel free.

COMMITMENT TO COMMUNITY GUIDELINES AND SOCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY

All participants are asked to participate as socially accountable community members. We ask that you provide your full name as your display name during the online meeting and that you review our community guidelines ahead of your participation in the event. This is to ensure the safety of our guests and speakers as well as foster honest and accountable dialogue between people in this space. Thank you for respecting our community guidelines!

  • Above all, there will be zero tolerance for those who promote violence against others on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, religious affiliation, or different ability. Anyone who incites harm towards other participants (be it through the chat, video or audio functions) will be removed at the discretion of our technical team and moderator.
  • Be as present as possible (turn video on, put away phone, close/mute tabs).
  • Thoughtful questions are welcome in the chat throughout the session. If your question is for a particular speaker, type “@name” at the beginning.
  • Don’t assume pronouns/gender/knowledge based on someone’s name or video image. We can refer to people using the usernames they provide!
  • Step up, step back: if you’ve asked a question or shared a comment, ensure that new voices are heard before you contribute again.
  • Practice self-care: if you need to get up or take a break, please feel free.

If you have any questions, concerns, or comments regarding this event’s accessibility or privacy, feel free to connect with us at psqevent@sfu.ca.

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