600 people have died of drug overdoses in Nova Scotia in the last 10 years, and we only know this because of a leaked email. Imagine the uproar if these deaths didn’t affect drug addicts but nice middle class people. Instead we have two levels of governments cutting subsidies to organizations that are trying to keep such deaths to a minimum.

Last week we reported that Mainline Needle Exchange in Halifax is facing a budget crunch, this week the news is that its Cape Breton counterpart may well close its doors early next year because the federal government is no longer funding the organization. Time for the province to step up to the plate.

Mainline Needle Exchange, an organization that helps people who live with drug addictions in mainland Nova Scotia, can’t keep up with the demand, something the provincial government is trying hard to ignore. Lives are at stake. The Nova Scotia Advocate went to Mainline’s open house to find out more.

This week’s featured video is Cottonland, a 2006 documentary about recovering addict Eddie Buchanan and the damage the prescription painkiller oxycontin is doing to his friends and neighbors in Glace Bay, Cape Breton. It’s also about the shutting down of the coal mines. And it’s about a bunch of exceptional people, loving parents, funny, with big hearts. They’re also thieves who do or did terrible things.