126 children and youth died of toxic drugs in 5 years: B.C. coroner – CBC

Data shows urgent need for more harm reduction and supportive spaces for youth, says researcher

May 29, 2024

The B.C. Coroners Service has found that 126 children and youth younger than 19 died due to toxic drugs between 2019 and 2023.

The numbers, released in a Tuesday report, showed that unregulated drug toxicity was the most common cause of unnatural death among youth during that time period.

More than 70 per cent of deaths occurred in private residences, according to the coroners service, and more than half of the youth who died were using drugs alone.

The stark numbers — eight years into a public health emergency that claims around six lives daily — show the need for more harm reduction, education and mental health support services tailored to youth, according to one researcher.

Read more: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/bc-coroners-service-youth-toxic-drugs-1.7217783

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