An important piece by John Geddes in MacLeans: RCMP and the truth about safe injection sites
It would have been quite a news conference, and it very nearly happened. Last fall, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the British Columbia Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS, after months of intense, private talks, agreed to face the media together to declare their agreement that research shows the â€œbenefitsâ€ and â€œpositive impactsâ€ of supervised injection sites for intravenous drug users. […]
â€œI can confirm we are good to go from our end,â€ said Chief Superintendent Bob Harriman, a top RCMP drug enforcement officer in Vancouver, in an email he sent on Oct. 28, 2009, to Dr. Julio Montaner, director of the B.C. centre. Harrimanâ€™s email included â€œproposed messaging for [a] joint media releaseâ€ of the RCMP and the research centre. The RCMP would acknowledge â€œan extensive body of Canadian and international peer-reviewed research reporting the benefits of supervised injection sites and no objective peer-reviewed studies demonstrating harms.â€ As well, Harriman said the RCMP would admit that â€œreviewsâ€ commissioned by the force, which contested the centreâ€™s research, â€œdid not meet conventional academic standards.â€
The proposed joint media release was never issued. Nor did the RCMP officers and the centreâ€™s doctors appear together for their planned news conference. According to Montaner, two days before the scheduled event last Decemberâ€”after a venue had been booked at the University of British Columbia and â€œthe banners were readyâ€â€”he received a telephone call from Deputy Commissioner Gary Bass, the most senior RCMP officer in British Columbia. â€œHe said, â€˜Julio, canâ€™t do it,â€™ â€ Montaner recalls. â€œI said, â€˜What do you mean, Gary?â€™ He said, â€˜Iâ€™m really sorry, Iâ€™ve been ordered not to go ahead with the news conference.â€™ â€
Despite over 30 peer-reviewed studies showing that Insite works, the sadomoralists in the conservative government in Canada have been desperately trying to shut it down.