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Statement from Alberta ministers on federal response to opioid crisis

Brandy Payne, Associate Minister of Health, and Kathleen Ganley, Minister of Justice and Solicitor General, have issued the following statement in response to federal legislation introduced today to help prevent opioid deaths: 

“We have been calling on the federal government to introduce legislation allowing supervised consumption services to set up more quickly and we are encouraged by these proposed amendments. These programs are crucial in saving lives and reducing the toll opioid abuse has on Alberta families and communities. Our government is clear in our support for these public health services, evident by our decision earlier this fall to provide funding for agencies to set up supervised consumption services in Alberta. We agree this crisis needs to be addressed first and foremost as a public health crisis and we are pleased the federal government shares that approach.

Brandy Payne, Associate Minister of Health

“We are pleased to see the federal government has moved on our request to prohibit the unregistered import of pill presses. This national action is something our government requested in November 2015 and again in April of this year. This proposed legislation will make it more difficult for organized crime groups to distribute large quantities of fentanyl and other opioids.

"We also support increasing the authority of the Canada Border Services Agency to inspect more shipments coming into Canada. Giving our law enforcement partners added tools to combat the flow of illegal drugs at the border will also help Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams (ALERT) carry out its work protecting Albertans.”

Kathleen Ganley, Minister of Justice & Solicitor General

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