As the DT East goes to press, we received word that DTES poet and activist Bud Osborn has died. Bud was a founding member of the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users and was appointed to the Vancouver Richmond Health Board in the 1990s. Bud was the driving force that pushed the Health Board to declare a public health emergency in the DTES because of the raging epidemic of drug overdose deaths. Bud’s work was also instrumental in getting Insite open, North America’s only safe injection site. Bud was passionate and tireless in humanizing people who use drugs, fighting back against the rampant social stigma caused by the war on drugs.
we have become a community of prophets in
the downtown eastside
rebuking the system
and speaking hope and possibility into situations
of apparent impossibility
To raise shit is to actively resist
and we resist with our presence
with our words
with our love
with our courage.
Rest in Peace, Bud
Thanks for saving so many lives