Members of the Tseshaht First Nations rally on Third Avenue and Argyle Street today (July 27) to make a stand against drug dealers in Port Alberni.
“No more drugs,” they chant as cars drive by honking in support.
“We’re just tired of the overdoses, kids dying and the drugs being cut with radiator fluid and horse tranquilizers,” said Lea Rothery who was holding a sing that read “love is not selling drugs.”
The protest was organized by Tseshaht First Nations after the death of 18-year-old Jocelyn George.
George was taken into Port Alberni RCMP cells on Thursday, June 23 and was airlifted to Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria where she died the following evening.
“She overdosed,” Rothery said. “After that we just decided when is enough? How many more is it going to take before we say anything?”
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According to the British Columbia Coroners Service there has been 76 drug overdose deaths on Vancouver Island between January and June of 2016.
“It affects everybody, it’s affecting the whole community and it just keeps getting progressively worse,” Rothery said. “I’m just tired of it, [drugs] are too easily available.”