The executive director of Women’s Network P.E.I. says women in the province likely have drugs slipped into their drinks more often than the general public would think.
Last week, Charlottetown police reported two separate cases of drinks spiked with noxious substances at Charlottetown bars. Investigations are ongoing.
“It is disappointing to hear that this occurred,” said Jillian Kilfoil. “It is good to know that it is being reported in the media and police are following up.
“It is something that, anecdotally, we know occurs quite regularly in Charlottetown and other places in P.E.I.”
Cases of spiked drinks occur frequently and P.E.I. is no exception, Kilfoil said.
“As a woman who talks to a lot of women who work with a lot of young people, we know this happens a lot and it doesn’t always get reported on.”
It’s a problem that needs to be addressed more in the province, Kilfoil said. These are not “one-off issues.”
There are measures bars and pubs can take to prevent these issues from escalating, said Kilfoil.
In recent years, she said, at least one bar in the city created a code to help those who feel unsafe. In that case, patrons can ask for an “angel” shot — which lets bartenders know they’re worried about safety or think they may have been drugged.
Sign-in sheets and surveillance at bars and pubs can also help ensure safety, Kilfoil said.
Right now, acknowledging that drugged drinks are a problem on the island is what’s most important, she said.
“It’s an issue and we all need to address it. So, it’s not about blaming or shaming any individual or establishment.”