Court battle blasted - Metro US

Court battle blasted

The money spent on the fight to keep Vancouver’s supervised injection site open would have been better spent on opening another site, a plaintiff in the case said yesterday.

Dean Wilson, a drug user and former president of the Vancouver Area Network Of Drug Users, said while he’s pleased with the B.C. Supreme Court court’s decision, it shouldn’t have gone to court.

On Tuesday, InSite was granted permanent constitutional exemption from two sections of the controlled drugs and substances act. Until then, the site required an exemption from Canada’s drug laws to remain open.

“What the judge essentially said was that addicts … have the right to the same health care as everyone else and addiction is a health-care issue as opposed to a criminal issue,” Wilson said.

Monique Pongracic-Speier, the plaintiffs’ lawyer, said the courts gave the federal government until June 30, 2009, to rewrite the laws to allow harm-reduction initiatives like InSite.

The decision may still be appealed by the federal government.


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