What do organized crime, money laundering, the opioid crisis, and housing affordability have in common? On this episode of For the Record, BCIT News reporter Emily Vance sits down with Stephanie Smith, the president of the British Columbia Government and Service Employees Union (BCGEU). On January 21st, the organization called for a public inquiry to take place. Allegations have surfaced that illicit drug money is being laundered through BC institutions and then invested into real estate, inflating land value and decreasing affordability in Metro Vancouver and across the province. With the opioid crisis showing no signs of slowing – Smith says that many government workers have been thrust into first responder roles.
“We have seen since 2013 just a massive increase in the impact of the opioid crisis that we’re experiencing in British Columbia.
Our members in community social services, in health care, our members in casinos, our members in libraries, deputy sheriffs, corrections – they’ve been thrust into a first responder role. They’re often the people who are maintaining life until emergency responders can get there. – Stephanie Smith, President of BCGEU