Defending access to harm reduction

A growing number of municipalities have amended their zoning bylaws to restrict access to methadone and harm reduction services. Pivot has argued that these amendments overstep municipal zoning powers and are discriminatory in that they distinguish health care services for people who use drugs from other healthcare uses. The most sweeping anti-harm reduction bylaw in B.C. was introduced by the City of Abbotsford in 2005. In May 2013, Pivot filed a lawsuit and human rights complaint challenging the bylaw, which prohibited all harm reduction uses anywhere in the municipality. In early 2014, the City of Abbotsford voted to amend the bylaw before the case went to court, a huge victory for people who use drugs in the City of Abbotsford and for human rights in this province.