NAPS questions approval of generic Oxy
Nishnawbe Aski Police Service (NAPS) is questioning the federal government’s decision to allow the development of a generic form of OxyContin.
On Nov. 19, Health Canada Minister Leona Aglukkaq told her provincial and territorial counterparts that she would not politically interfere with the regulatory approval process for a generic form of OxyContin.
The decision allows drug manufacturers to develop a generic form of the drug once the patent for it expires on Nov. 25.
In a media release statement, NAPS said OxyContin severely impacts the First Nations it serves, where addiction rates are much higher on a per capita basis than in southern Ontario.
This year alone, NAPS has seized illicit OxyContin drugs valued at over $1 million.
“The market for these drugs in northern communities is so lucrative that criminal organizations from the Greater Toronto Area are targeting the NAN communities,” the release said.
To add insult, the federal government has informed NAPS that it will no longer fund the Police Officer Recruitment Fund (PORF) after March of 2013. Eleven NAPS officers are funded under PORF including a drug enforcement officer.
NAPS said allowing generic versions of OxyContin to be produced and “ultimately be illegally distributed to our communities” while simultaneously reducing NAPS funding and its ability to do drug enforcement “flies in the face of logic.”
“The government must take the leadership role they were elected to do,” the release said. “They must prevent this drug from being produced.”
NAPS serves 35 First Nations communities in northern Ontario.
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