(File photo)

Mayor signs deal to find out more about overdose victims

Statistics Canada partnership hoped to create better understanding of demographic that is overdosing

SURREY — Mayor Linda Hepner says a partnership just signed with Statistics Canada will mean Surrey will soon know more about who is overdosing in the city, and where.

“It will bring together federal, provincial and municipal data for Surrey in a way that’s never been done to date,” Hepner told the Now-Leader. “Statistics Canada, with their statistical expertise and all the robust data sets they have, we’re going to shape approaches for intervention and support.”

See also: Average of 15 die of overdose each month in Surrey

See also: More than 1,000 people have died as a result of the overdose crisis in 2017

Hepner said Surrey is the first municipality in Canada to sign such a partnership with Statistics Canada amid the opioid overdose epidemic.

It will mean a “much better understanding of the demographic,” she said.

“Are there opportunities for intervention at the school level? Are there issues around health? Is it a pain-related issue? Are issues poverty related? We will be able to create primary risk factors and create a much better understanding of the characteristics of those most at risk.”

Surrey Fire Service data will be utilized, she noted, to learn exactly where overdoses are happening.

The new program’s working group is in place, Hepner added, and they will “work quickly.”

B.C. has hit a record number of illicit overdose deaths.

In all, 1,013 people in B.C. have died as a result of the overdose crisis in 2017, which is 83 more than the total death toll in all of 2016.

The Coroners Service says 88.5 per cent of all drug overdose deaths happened inside and 11 per cent outside or in vehicles.

In August, the latest numbers available from the BC Coroners Service, 113 people are suspected to have died of drug overdose, which equates to about 3.6 deaths per day for the month.

The August deaths are a 79 per cent increase over the same month in 2016.

-With files from Katya Slepian



amy.reid@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook and follow Amy on Twitter

Just Posted

German-born British Columbian warns against a ‘yes’ vote on proportional representation

Agassiz realtor Freddy Marks says PR in his home country shows party elites can never be voted out

Highest earning staff at Fraser-Cascade School District made public

Also board looks into seat belts on school buses, Marv Cope gets road in his memory

Agassiz teacher’s Amazing Race takes students on Canada-wide adventure

AESS students say they had the experience of a life time

WATCH: Brother of missing Hope woman makes emotional appeal for more media attention

Next search for Shawnee Inyallie Nov. 18 along Highway 1 towards Boston Bar

Gas price drop expected to hit Fraser Valley today

Analyst says to take advantage, warns slight increase may follow

REPLAY: B.C’s best video this week

In case you missed it, here’s a look at the replay-worth highlights from this week across the province

Victoria spent $30,000 to remove John A. Macdonald statue

Contentious decision sparked controversy, apology from mayor

Privacy concerns over credit card use for legal online pot purchases

Worries follow privacy breaches at some Canadian cannabis retailers

Vancouver Police look for man in connection to ‘sexually motivated’ assault

Woman says man followed her into an apartment building

NEB approves operating pressure increase to repaired Enbridge pipeline

The pipeline burst outside of Prince George on Oct. 9, now operating at 85 per cent

B.C. VIEWS: Setting speed limits in a post-fact political environment

Media prefer ‘speed kills’ narrative, even when it fails to appear

Controversy erupts over Japanese flag in B.C. classroom

Online petition demanding removal has collected more than 5,700 signatures

Death toll rises to 76 in California fire with winds ahead

Nearly 1,300 people remain unaccounted for more than a week after the fire began

Most Read