The Overdose Crisis & COVID-19: Support Peers Through Two Emergencies

The Overdose Crisis & COVID-19: Support Peers Through Two Emergencies

2020 served as a record-breaking year in lives lost to the overdose crisis.

In 2020 alone, 1716 people died from an illicit drug overdose in BC, a 74% increase over the number of deaths in 2019. To put it in perspective, over 4.7 people died an overdose each day in BC in 2020, two deaths a day higher than in 2019.

The overdose crisis is worsening because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and First Nations people in BC are disproportionately and severely impacted. These two public health emergencies are colliding like nothing we’ve seen before. We must act now.

You can help protect lives and change the course of public health in BC.

Compassion, Inclusion, & Engagement is a partnership program between the BC Centre for Disease Control and the First Nations Health Authority that empowers people with lived and living experience of substance use (peers) to take action and stop overdose in their community. The work that peers do is based in public health, saving lives, and ending the overdose crisis.

This is what our world can look like when we don’t criminalize people who use drugs.
This is what’s possible when we prioritize investment in community supports.
This is what investing in health equity and Indigenous health can do.

How CIE supports peers and makes an immediate impact

  • CIE funds peer groups providing overdose response for those who are fearful of accessing sites during COVID-19, and in communities where overdose prevention sites don’t exist.
  • CIE supports peers delivering clean and safe harm reduction supplies and training to individuals in isolation, who are immunocompromised, and who otherwise can’t access supplies.
  • CIE helps peers establish meaningful connections in their community and work to eliminate stigma, which has been an ongoing contributor to the overdose crisis.

Thank you for helping us reach our first target of $30,000! We’ve increased our goal to $45,000 and we need your continued support to help us reach our new target. Will you help us get there?

Each CIE peer group is eligible for a grant of up to $10,000; the more we raise, the more groups across BC we can support. But we can’t do it without you.

Stand with us and show that investing in community support makes a greater difference than criminalizing people who use drugs.

We can’t risk losing any more of our friends and family to the overdose crisis. We’re already seeing the impact of dual public health crises on this community—we have to act now to prevent further deaths.

Please, donate to our Reducing Harms Priority today to support CIE and save lives.


For more updates subscribe to our monthly newsletter or follow us on social media!
NEWSLETTER