VANCOUVER, B.C. (CN) – The nonprofit group that runs Insite, Vancouver’s supervised injection site, claims the Royal Canadian Mounted Police commissioned a defamatory report that discredited more than a dozen peer-reviewed studies showing the site’s public health benefits.
The PHS Community Services Society claims the study written by defendant Dr. Colin Mangham, a critic of Vancouver’s harm-reduction drug policy, “seriously injured its character, credit and reputation.”
The article, “A Critique of Canada’s Insite Injection Site and its Parent Philosophy: Implications and Recommendations for Policy Planning,” was published online by the Drug Free America Foundation in 2007. It was republished this summer, according to the complaint in B.C. Supreme Court.
The society also sued Chuck Doucette, a former member of the RCMP and a board member of the Drug Prevention Network of Canada. That organization was founded by former parliamentarian Randy White, a member of Canada’s governing Conservative Party, which has repeatedly tried to pull the plug on the controversial injection site. Dr. Mangham also sits on the board of the DPNC.
“Defendant Doucette slandered the reputation of Insite and the plaintiff by actively promoting [Mangham’s article], when he knew, or ought to have known, it was defamatory and inaccurate,” the complaint states.
The society is represented by H. Nina Purewal of Pivot Legal LLP.