Honourable Rachna Singh, Minister of Education
Honourable Jennifer Whiteside, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions
Honourable Adrian Dix, Minister of Health
Room 337, Parliament Buildings
Victoria, BC V8V 1X4
Dear Honourable Ministers,
Re: Drug prevention education in schools and the distribution of drug use paraphernalia
I am writing to you today with serious concerns regarding drug prevention education in British Columbia.
Over the past weeks, I have been alerted to multiple incidents involving the distribution of inappropriate materials in B.C. schools, including drug use paraphernalia. Multiple parents have come forward to express their concerns over the distribution of “safe snorting kits” consisting of glass pipes, snorting straws, and tin foil, being distributed to their children in schools in Cowichan and Maple Ridge (refer to Image A and B on PDF).
Additionally, I received a separate complaint after students were given wall posters promoting Magic Mushrooms (Image C on PDF) and Cocaine (Image D on PDF). I am attaching several photos for your reference.
I do not find the concerns of these parents to be unreasonable. In subsequent media coverage, the Cowichan Valley School District stated the kits which were distributed by a third party, were inappropriate for the students.
On behalf of concerned families, I am asking for clarification on the current drug awareness and addiction prevention curriculum in British Columbia, and for clarification on how third-party presenters, and any materials provided to students are vetted to ensure they meet age-appropriate guidelines and fit within the current curriculum.
BC United Shadow Minister for Mental Health, Addiction, Recovery & Education
MLA for Surrey South