Woman Running 900km to Advocate for a Safe Drug Supply

jessica michalofsky

My knees are a little stiff, but I’m okay.

That’s what Jessica Michalofsky told Bounce News before leaving Christina Lake in her 900km run from Nelson to Victoria.

She is advocating for a safe drug supply across BC.

The 51-year-old who is running 30km each day, says she opposed the idea of a safe supply until the death last summer of her 25 year old son in Nelson.

“it’s for that purpose and that purpose alone, the preservation of life, that I think that a safe regulated, non-black-market source of drugs for some people is what is required,” Jessica said, adding that her son Aubrey, an award winning student at Selkirk Collage also struggled with drugs.

Michalofsky ran marathons around government offices in Victoria to bring attention to the issue and had a meeting with the former Mental Health and Addictions Minister and Dr. Bonnie Henry.

She left the meeting disappointed.

“They agreed with me, they said, you know, not enough is being done and they couldn’t tell me why more wasn’t being done,” she explained, noting that people from all walks of life continue to die from tainted toxic drugs.

“First time users are dying, casual users, those people are dying too because no one can be assured of the substances they are taking any more,” Jessica added, stating that safe drugs need to be available across the entire province.

“It’s only happening in pilot projects in a few places in British Columbia,” she stated.

“So the majority of people who live in Winlaw, Duncan and Masset don’t have access to these life saving services,” she explained.

Michalofsky has spoken with many people during rallies in Nelson, Winlaw and Castlegar and said she received strong support from harm reduction workers.

“They really want me to run,” said Jessica.

“They really feel that they have been under represented, that their voices haven’t been heard and that their work isn’t being seen or valued,” she added.

Michalofsky said she has also spoken with other parents who have lost their kids to drugs and don’t know what to do about it.

She also got a surprise donation from a driver who saw her running along the highway.

“One car did turn around and asked me if I needed a ride somewhere and then gave me $20 when they heard I was running to Victoria,” she said amusingly.

Another rally was planned for Jessica on Fri in Grand Forks.