The Four Pillars Revisited by The Terry Project

Authors

Philip Owen [Left] and Donald MacPherson [Right] are architects of Vancouver’s “Four Pillars” drug policies. Now they fear those pillars are crumbling.
Philip Owen [Left] and Donald MacPherson [Right] are architects of Vancouver’s “Four Pillars” drug policies. Now they fear those pillars are crumbling.
In 2001, after much campaigning by activists, academics and public health officials, Vancouver’s municipal council approved the boldest, most progressive drug policy in North America: A Framework For Action: A Four-Pillar Approach to Vancouver’s Drug Problems.

The Four Pillars‘ philosophy was simple but revolutionary: the government should lessen the harms associated with drug use, even if those drugs are illegal. The document made 36 recommendations, including heroin prescription, methadone maintenance and supervised injection.

However, the Four Pillars was passed over 13 years ago. Where do they stand today? This is our 5-part investigative series, The Four Pillars Revisited, produced in partnership with The Tyee, podcast on iTunes and syndicated on campus radio stations at the University of British Columbia, the University of Victoria and Simon Fraser University.

The Four Pillars Revisited is written and produced by Gordon Katic and Sam Fenn–hosts of UBC’s The Terry Project on CiTR. Listen to the part 1 below, and visit Soundcloud for the remaining episodes.