(File photo)

Surrey partners with Statistics Canada on opioid data collection

Surrey Mayor says partnership will 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.”

An average of 15 people have died of overdose each month in Surrey in 2017.

In all, 123 people have been killed by illicit drugs in the city so far this year, as of the end of August.

The death toll in Surrey peaked in May, with 21 deaths that month.

Thirteen people died in January, 15 in February, 14 in March, 12 in April, 13 in June, 17 in July and 18 in August.

Surrey’s drug death toll this year is second only to Vancouver, which has seen 255 people killed so far this year.

Meantime, 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

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Outdoor AED unit in Surrey among the first in B.C.

SaveStation cabinet is alarmed and monitored – and hasn’t been used yet

Trade sends Surrey NHLer Brenden Dillon to Washington

‘We felt it was important for us to add a player of his caliber to our defensive group,’ says Caps GM

Suspect in Surrey forcible confinement arrested in Toronto

Constable Richard Wright, of the Surrey RCMP, said William Daniels-Sey was arrested on Feb. 16

ZYTARUK: Trudeau needs to stop dithering and fix blockade crisis

Trudeau noted Canadians are asking themselves, “What is happening in this country?” He’s got that right

Tamanawis boys repeat as B.C. high school wrestling champs

Sehijvir Sandhu and Karanpreet Gill earn gold medals for the Surrey team

VIDEO: 7 things you need to know about the 2020 B.C. budget

Surplus of $227 million with big spending on infrastructure and capital projects

New highway proposed between Alberta and B.C.

The route would connect Red Deer to Kamloops

What’s in a name? The story of Revelstoke’s Mt. Begbie

It’s likely the iconic peak had several Indigenous peoples’ names before settlers arrived

Budget 2020: B.C. Liberals blast ‘Netflix tax,’ lack of economic plan

ICBC rates still go up, except in election year, Shirley Bond says

Teen snowmobiler from Kelowna found after air force’s overnight search

The teen had been missing since just after 6 p.m. on Monday

Two law enforcement trucks ‘deliberately’ set on fire in northern B.C., RCMP say

Police say they have video evidence of a person in the area of the truck fires

Nanaimo man wins lotto, plans to buy $16,000 fridge

Curtis Wright a winner in Lotto 6/49 draw

Metro Vancouver wants the region to repurpose, donate, or repair used clothing

Textile mending workshops to be held across the Lower Mainland

Three protesters arrested after blocking driveway at premier’s home

Protestors claimed they would make a citizen’s arrest of the Premier, according to West Shore RCMP

Most Read