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Forceable separation of children from mothers increases unintended overdose, disproportionate harms to Indigenous mothers

December 15, 2020   |   Media, Press Releases

Child custody removal is directly associated with risk of unintended overdose, according to a new study from the Centre for Gender & Sexual Health Equity (CGSHE).

A peer-reviewed paper published this month in the International Journal of Drug Policy draws on eight years of longitudinal data from two long-term community-based research projects of marginalized women led by the CGSHE at the University of British Columbia.

This research highlights the urgent need to recognize the unintended harms of child removal on women’s health and the immediate need for large-scale systemic change to child welfare systems. Findings reveal that child custody removal disproportionately targets communities marginalized due to social and economic disadvantages, including Indigenous people, for whom child custody removal is deeply embedded in ongoing racist policies and colonial history of forced family separation and genocide. (Photo by Alana Paterson)

Download the full press release.