Feds show black heart on national drug vote

Rejection of cheap drugs bill ignores desperate need in African countries

Bill C-398 proposed allowing generic drug manufacturers to legally sell much-needed drugs to developing countries that can’t afford brand-name equivalents.

This bill would have alleviated enormous suffering and saved the lives of potentially millions of people fighting HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.

But quoting vague trade concerns, the Stephen Harper government used its majority to defeat this bill.

Experts say the trade argument is specious and the result is that countless people will suffer and die.

The people affected might be far away – they might look different from many of us – but their suffering and deaths are real, are human and will be directly attributable to the actions of these elected MPs.

In 2008, there were 1.8 million deaths by HIV, 1.7 million by TB and one million deaths of children to malaria.

Generic drugs can cost one-fifth that of brand-name equivalents, which means that five times the people can be treated for the same cost.

And Canada was not risking an untested program; Unitaid works with big Pharma to distribute generics to 70 countries around the world.

There is something about shared humanity that seems to be missing here, something called conscience.

This bill would not cost Canada anything and even the drug companies that hold these patents had agreed to this bill.

With no justifiable reason to withhold support for bill C-398, these Conservative MPs have brought great shame to Canada.

Nathaniel Poole

Victoria

 

Just Posted

Unruly passenger forces Victoria-bound flight to divert to Calgary

Police say charges are pending against a woman in her 40s

Victoria Whisky Festival kicks off this weekend

Whisky-lovers flock to Hotel Grand Pacific for weekend events and tastings

Victoria invited to get a closer look at Sunday’s lunar eclipse

Special event allows public to view the moon through UVic telescopes

Overworked and understaffed: More than 300 vacancies in Vancouver Island nursing

Tentative deal with province includes ‘working short premium’ to encourage hiring

25 drivers in Victoria pulled for drug impairment since cannabis legalized

Little change seen in number of impaired drivers since new laws enacted

Fashion Fridays: Inspirational gym outfits

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Jan. 15

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Should people have to license their cats?

The Victoria Natural History Society has sent letters to 13 municipalities in… Continue reading

Vancouver Island conservancy group calls for government to shut down Georgia Strait herring roe fishery

DFO says extensive research is done annually before setting a maximum harvest rate

High court ruling allows long-term expats to vote in byelections across Canada

Supreme Court decision enfranchised an estimated one million or more Canadian expats to be able to vote

Missing B.C. boy and aunt found safe

The pair had been reported missing from Kamloops

Company issues lifetime ban after man jumps from cruise ship

Nick Naydev posted the video last week showing him standing on the balcony of the Symphony of the Seas

The debate over how to teach math in B.C.

Tutoring businesses growing with concerns

Inflation rises as higher airfares, veggie prices offset cheaper gas

Statistics Canada says inflation accelerated to two per cent in December

Most Read