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Drug-snorting gear left for students after presentation at Cowichan Valley school

The material left with students after a drug presentation included a booklet on safe drug-snorting as well as straws for snorting and small cards for cutting lines of powdered drugs
Safer snorting kits were handed out by a third party after a presentation at an Island high school. AARON GUNN VIA TWITTER

The Cowichan Valley School District is investigating after material it does not consider “school or age appropriate” was left at a school after a drug-related presentation.

The material included a booklet on safe drug-snorting as well as straws for snorting and small cards for cutting lines of powdered drugs.

District spokesman Mike Russell said in a statement that the material was from “a third-party harm-reduction and drug-addiction presentation.”

“While the Cowichan Valley School District does support harm reduction as a well-researched and effective method of addressing the ongoing opioid crisis and conversations around drugs and drug addiction, we aim to ensure that the teachings related to it are appropriate for our students,” Russell said.

“The materials left by this third party did not meet this threshold, and for that we apologize to our community.”

Russell said the district is investigating the incident and reviewing policies and procedures regarding third-party presentations and materials.

The booklet is called Safer Snorting from the group CATIE, formerly known as the Canadian AIDS Treatment Information Exchange. CATIE did not give the school-district presentation.

“You may be new to snorting drugs or have snorted drugs for many years,” the booklet says. “Either way, this resource has something for you.”

It says it contains “straightforward, non-judgmental and up-to-date information that you can use to make decisions about your health.”

The booklet advises that hepatitis B and C can be contracted through shared straws or rolled paper used with drugs, or by sharing stems and pipes and injection equipment. It says that snorting paraphernalia can be personalized by using coloured straws or by marking straws with tape.

“Use your own equipment or the back of your clean hand to snort drugs and do not share,” the booklet says. “Know the source of your drugs and prepare lines yourself.”

It also advises having condoms in case users have sex while high.

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