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Ontario Premier Doug Ford asks feds to pause safe supply programs

Written by on May 17, 2024

TORONTO — Ontario Premier Doug Ford has asked the federal government to put a pin in approving new sites that supply safe opioids.

Ford has written a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau asking the federal government to review the Health Canada-approved safe supply sites across the country.

The letter comes a day after the provincial health minister and solicitor general wrote to Toronto Public Health telling it to drop its application to decriminalize illegal drug possession for personal use.

Opioids have torn through the country over the past decade leaving thousands dead every year.  

Ontario’s chief coroner has found fentanyl in the vast majority of opioid overdose deaths, often found in a dangerous cocktail with benzodiazepines and, lately, with xylazine, a tranquillizer used by veterinarians on animals. 

The province’s position is at odds with Chief Medical Officer of Health Kieran Moore, who has called for expansion of safe supply as one tool to deal with the opioid crisis.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 17, 2024.

The Canadian Press