Vancouver May Deal Drugs
VANCOUVER -- Vancouver's mayor is considering a plan to provide free drugs to addicts to help clean up the Downtown Eastside before the 2010 Winter Olympics.
Sam Sullivan said yesterday an anonymous donor has offered $500,000 to fund an innovative harm-reduction program, and he has asked experts and community groups to look at the proposal.
The mayor added that he's willing to risk his political career to bring in a drug-maintenance program.
The goal, he says, is to protect women addicts forced into prostitution and to deal with Vancouver's crime and social disorders.Sullivan agrees enforcement, treatment and prevention are necessary, but the mayor is skeptical about the success of police roundups and treatment programs.
"At least three times during my time on council, we have sent the police in to clean up once and for all."
The mayor said that he also hasn't seen overwhelming evidence that treatment programs work."I've looked at mandatory treatment in the United States and still seen open drug use there."