Group says RCMP paid to slam safe injection site
A Vancouver legal group is calling on the federal auditor general to examine whether the RCMP misused public funds by paying for two reports about a supervised injection site in the city's notorious Downtown Eastside.
Lawyer Douglas King of the Pivot Legal Society says the Mounties have refused to divulge whether they paid for the critiques of the Insite facility, even though one of the authors says he received money from the force.
King says the group wants Auditor General Sheila Fraser to look into the matter because the facility where addicts shoot up their own drugs involves a health issue, not policing concerns.
King says the Mounties also commissioned two earlier reports that praised Insite, but removed the RCMP name and didn't want them publicized.
He also says internal RCMP emails received through a Freedom of Information request suggest the Mounties met with several Tory MPs who may have used the reports to justify efforts to close Insite.
An RCMP official was not immediately available for comment but has said that further study is needed into the facility.
Pivot went public with the allegations Tuesday, saying at least two of the academic critiques were published at a time when a growing number of reports from respected scientific journals pointed to benefits for Insite.
With files from The Canadian Press