Sidney Should Be Here

Sidney was a bright, talented, engaging 18 year old general science student at the University of Victoria.
- She died a preventable death -
The systems designed to protect her allowed her to die.

Opioid poisoning is the leading cause of death in our youth in BC. This province has done little to help protect our young people who may occasionally experiment with, or inadvertently be exposed to drugs that are contaminated with deadly fentanyl.

We have written an open letter asking the BC government to do more to stop the deaths:

Letter submitted to UVic President, Senate, Board of Governors
June 4, 2024

Vancouver Sun article: Fentanyl poisoning on UVic campus
May 16, 2024

Click here to see other related news articles

Death of first-year university student sparks calls for naloxone on university campuses, high schools
Vancouver Sun, June 15, 2024

UVic president admits ‘mistakes were made’ after student overdosed
Vancouver Sun, June 7, 2024

Letters to the Sun: B.C. seems to be failing students with naloxone protocols
Vancouver Sun, June 7, 2024

Parents refute University of Victoria’s comments about daughter’s death
Saanich News, June 5, 2024

B.C. post-secondary minister admits gaps led to death of UVic student
Vancouver Sun, May 25, 2024

B.C. promising changes after preventable overdose death of University of Victoria student
10/3 podcast, May 24, 2024

What would you rather do? Squirt naloxone up a victim’s nose or inject a needle?
Vancouver Sun, May 23, 2024

B.C. campuses to implement overdose prevention measures after death of University of Victoria student
Globe and Mail, May 22, 2024

High school CPR training is mandatory in four provinces. Why not in B.C.?
Vancouver Sun, May 22, 2024

After UVic student’s death, calls for mandatory CPR and naloxone training in B.C. high schools
CTV News Vancouver, May 22, 2024

B.C. universities don’t have standard way of handling drug overdoses
Vancouver Sun, May 22, 2024

Coroner’s inquest to probe overdose death of UVic student
CBC News BC, May 21, 2024

Are students safe on B.C. university, college campuses during the toxic drug crisis?
Vancouver Sun, May 21, 2024

Death of 18-year-old UVIC student from fentanyl prompts B.C. government to act
Global News, May 20, 2024

B.C. promising changes after preventable overdose death of University of Victoria student
Vancouver Sun, May 20, 2024

Students seek naloxone kits in UVic dorms after fatal OD
Times Colonist, May 18, 2024

Coroner’s inquest will investigate death of UVic student who died from drug overdose, says premier
Times Colonist, May 17, 2024

Family of 18-year-old who overdosed in UVic dorm says naloxone needs to be more available on B.C. campuses
CHEK News, May 17, 2024

Coroner to investigate UVic student’s death as parents call for harm reduction, naloxone in dorms
City News Vancouver, May 16, 2024

Overdose education should be mandatory in BC schools
CBC New BC, Sep 6, 2022

What you can do to help:

There is an opioid crisis in BC

We must do more to stop our young from dying.

Sidney should be here.
Royal Jubilee Hospital, Victoria – January 29, 2024

Explore these important initiatives:

Sidney should be here.

On January 23, 2024, University of Victoria campus security responded to Sidney with enough time to save her.  They were trained in CPR and carried nasal naloxone.  Instead of acting right away, they waited 9 minutes before giving naloxone, and 12 minutes to start CPR.  The 911 operator took 3.5 minutes just to figure out a location on campus before she even asked what was going on.

If this is what can happen with 911 and campus security, a university can turn into  a death trap for your student if they suffer a life threatening emergency while on campus. 

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  1. « If this is what can happen with 911 and campus security, a university can turn into a death trap for…

  2. I’m so sorry to read about the tragic loss of your daughter Sidney, it’s so heartbreaking. And thank-you for creating…

  3. I am so very sorry for your loss, Caroline. I can’t imagine your grief and anger. Meite and I have…

  4. Tragedy and a sad loss ! Good call to action but let’s add parents teaching their youth / young adults…

  5. I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. Reading about Sidney’s preventable death was both heart-breaking and extremely frustrating. I…

Click here to see all responses to
“Sidney Should Be Here”.

33 responses

  1. VR Avatar

    « If this is what can happen with 911 and campus security, a university can turn into a death trap for your student if they suffer a life threatening emergency while on campus. »

    Strong statement.
    Much appreciation to you for building this page and the advice for local leaders – may it be spread to each province and territory.

    Wishing you calm and resilience as you navigate your new reality.

  2. Ruth MacLaurin Avatar
    Ruth MacLaurin

    I’m so sorry to read about the tragic loss of your daughter Sidney, it’s so heartbreaking. And thank-you for creating the webpage Sidney Should Be Here and all the important medical information you have shared.

    We will be following this story very closely, keeping close watch to governmental changes, the responsibilities at all levels, of all institutions. Thank-you for informing the public, for your generosity in sharing the tragic circumstances of your daughter’s passing.

    Our deepest condolences to you and your family.

  3. Alexandra Best Avatar
    Alexandra Best

    I am so very sorry for your loss, Caroline. I can’t imagine your grief and anger. Meite and I have talked so much about this tragedy. I will help if I can.

  4. M Avatar

    Tragedy and a sad loss ! Good call to action but let’s add parents teaching their youth / young adults , to look after themselves , give them opioid reversal kits when they leave and head to university or just any parties in general … we can not blame others for choices made by others. We need to educate personal responsibility – if you want to use drugs there is a risk , have your kits , do not use alone , have at least one sober friend available – use drug wise !
    CPR C and first aid should be embedded in gym requirements of high school graduation ! An objective review of process is always a good plan to ensure any mistakes are corrected and a standard safety plan for universities around a potential opioid overdose is in place.

  5. J Avatar

    I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. Reading about Sidney’s preventable death was both heart-breaking and extremely frustrating.

    I am a teacher trained in Occupational First Aid. I strongly agree that first aid and CPR training should be included in the BC Secondary School curriculum. It would be beneficial for all students and has the potential to save lives.

    I am very disappointed and frustrated to learn that UVic does not plan to switch to nasal Naloxone or improve access to kits on campus.

    I have emailed a copy of your letter outlining the 7 goals my local MLA. I will continue to follow you on Instagram and Facebook to receive updates on the progress of achieving these crucial goals.

    Thank you for sharing this and putting together this informative website.

    Wishing you and your family all the vert best at this extremely difficult time.


  6. H Avatar

    Thank you for putting such an informative site together.

    We fear for our children.

    Blessings to you. May her memory be for a blessing

  7. Brian Crosbie Avatar
    Brian Crosbie

    Hi Caroline,

    Wow this hit me really hard. I’m so sorry for your loss I can’t even imagine what you and your partner and family are going through.

    I come from a family of ER docs and nurses and the level of sheer incompetence of basically all involved in Sidney’s case makes me absolutely furious. The 911 dispatcher needs to lose their job and so do the campus security. How they sleep at night after that is anyone’s guess. Absolute morons.

    I emailed a copy of your letter to Hon. David Eby as well as my MLA. I really hope something can be done to tackle the out of control drug problem here in BC it’s absolutely unspeakably terrible and our systems are broken.

    My heart just breaks and aches for you.

    Mount Pleasant

  8. Zdena Daicar Avatar
    Zdena Daicar

    My heart is broken for you at what was a preventable loss of your daughter….our children must have more protection when we send them off to schools, basically entrusting them in their care….they have failed in their responsibilities and so has the government….and Sidney was the one who had to pay the price….

  9. Chantal Rackley Avatar
    Chantal Rackley

    Heart-wrenching and incredibly frustrating to know her life was so close to being saved. How can the process be so flawed? This is just devastating. Enough is enough. Thank you for sharing ❤️.

  10. Janice Avatar

    So sad, and the events on how it unfolded are so tragic. Yes, Sidney Should Be Here.
    Thank you Caroline for your love and dedication that you have poured into this website. You will make a change, I’m sure.

  11. Catherine Moffatt Avatar
    Catherine Moffatt

    Thank you for your advocacy in the midst of your grief. As the parent of a high school student looking ahead to post secondary I learned so much from reading Sidney’s story. I am shocked that campus security is supposed to be called before 911 and that overdose wasn’t right away suspected. I hope the changes at UVIC will be widely adopted on other campuses.

  12. Sophie Low-Beer Avatar
    Sophie Low-Beer

    I am devastated by what happened to your daughter. I am angry and sickened that at this stage of the toxic drug crisis this error was made by security and by 911. Tragic and unacceptable. Thank you for pushing for what should be an automatic response. I’m so sorry for your loss- as a mother of 2 teens and as a fellow ER doctor your experience hits very close to home.

  13. Susan Avatar

    My friend told me about this and I am so upset about what happened. We all need to be educated about this issue, the process of calling 911 at UVic dorms is archaic. Other Universities and Colleges call 911 immediately and Security at the same time. They also have Narcan/Naloxone available. I personally know a longtime friend of Sidney’s and she is a wonderful young lady, and is missing her friend. Our government needs to take action NOW.

  14. AT Avatar

    I didn’t know Sidney, but I am a fellow first year student in residence at UVic, and wish we had crossed paths in out time there as she sounds like a wonderful person. As someone who lost someone to a different failure of the BC government and healthcare system, mental health, just over a year ago, I am truly saddened by this story, as it never should have played out this way. So many systems in place to prevent drug related deaths fail too often, and tragically in the case of Sidney, they all failed at once. I hope this never happens again, but sadly I suspect it will. We, youth in BC, deserve better from UVic, the healthcare system, and the BC government.

  15. Sarah J. Macoun, PHD, R.Psych Avatar
    Sarah J. Macoun, PHD, R.Psych

    Thank you for sharing your heartbreaking story. Having teenagers of my own who have lost classmates to the opioid crisis, your story hit very close to home. I absolutely support your call for change. Something must change to keep our youth safe. I support your letter and suggestions

  16. Elyse Kim Avatar

    I am deeply sorry for your loss. Sidney’s death was preventable and she should be here today. My deepest condolences to you and your family as you grieve something that no person should have to.

  17. Dave C. Avatar
    Dave C.

    So sorry for your loss, devastating to lose a beautiful daughter like that. Hope you will connect with her again one day ( maybe in heaven? ) And thank you for advocating for change at all governmental and social levels. But please inform parents to have a ‘drug’ chat with their kids, more important than the traditional ‘sex’ chat about unwanted pregs and STDs. Kids need to know recreational drugs are almost always spiked, cut, mixed, etc., with other substances, ESPECIALLY with fentanyl. We had a rental suite, and I had met the tenant’s mom. Wasn’t aware that mom & daughter were recreational drug users, and was shocked to hear the mom died from fentanyl OD just a few months after meeting her.

    Narc kits can and do save lives, … but PARENTS NEED to tell their kids when they want to indulge, STAY SAFE , beer and blunts if you must, but dope dealers are not doctors, pharmacists, chemists, scientists. They will put everything and anything into their junk for sale, with no regards as to lethality or potency. When I see kids, I try to put the fear of God into them about street drugs. We all need to, cuz they just are too naive sometimes. Finally, no judgment towards you or your daughter, God knows when I was a youth, the many times I accidentally knocked on heaven’s door, and thank God, He didn’t answer. Regards, and all respect to you.

  18. Maddy Avatar

    I am so sorry to hear about such a tragic and preventable loss. As a uvic student that was living on campus the past year I am utterly shocked that I am just hearing about this loss of life now, as I can remember seeing the emergency vehicles on campus that night. Campus security is supposed to be there to keep us young students living away from home for the first time safe and they did everything but that in this situation. If the security officers were properly trained like they were claimed to be they would’ve recognized the situation right away, without being told about possible drug use. It’s absolutely heart breaking to hear that random students who did not witness the incident were the ones to take the most action. Uvics zero tolerance policy for drugs in the dorms probably scared the other girl who had taken the drugs out of admitted what had really happened. The fear of being kicked out of school, or housing may have cost a life that night. It is absolutely heartbreaking to hear about the loss of what seemed to be such a sweet soul and I hope she gets the justice she deserves.

  19. Brian Lahiffe Avatar
    Brian Lahiffe

    Such a beautiful life cut short way too soon. Who knows what great things Sidney would have gone on to

    I am particularly emotional about this as I have 2 sons at the same stage of life

    I am so sorry for your loss and I applaud your courage to speak out and try to prevent this tragedy from touching another family

  20. Juanita Avatar

    Such a heart-breaking tragedy. Two of my 3 children attended UVic. I have written David Eby and my MLA. I will forward to my friends. I hope others do the same—power in numbers. I am deeply sorry.

  21. Joanne Calder Avatar
    Joanne Calder

    I’m so terribly sorry for your loss and at the same time incredibly angry about the string of mistakes that led to your daughter’s death. There are so many things about this situation that are just so very wrong that I don’t even know where to begin. As a fellow Uvic parent with a son who also lived in the dorms there this year, I was shocked that, until today, my son had no idea that this tragedy had occurred. There should have been immediate sweeping changes and students should have been educated as to WHAT TO DO if a dorm mate overdoses. The silence around this situation makes me feel like the university is more worried about their own legal concerns than the students’ safety and well-being. I will email David Eby and wish you well on the changes for which you are advocating. They are so necessary. Take care. My thoughts are with you. This could be any of our children.

  22. Alexandra Avatar

    I am so proud of you for stepping up to the government and fighting for what is necessary to stop this crisis and to prevent others from experiencing a mishandled emergency. I can see that you are a united family and although I didn’t know Sidney, I am very moved to see how she is being supported by her family even after she may not be here. I’m sure she’s thankful and proud of you as a family and parents for doing so. I will keep getting informed and learning on how to help the current opioid crisis situation. I’ve seen this city deteriorate in the last years and it seems as though the lack of action from the city has been done on purpose. But believe me, more and more people are coming to realize the implications of this problem and the arricle on the Sun as well as your website will help to create and spread much more awareness on the situation. And there’s no doubt, your efforts will save lives. I send your family strength and courage to keep fighting for justice and unprecedented change. To have that love for your daughter propel you to keep going forward and to continuously and positively impact others’ lives

  23. SL Avatar

    I just read about the loss of your beloved daughter and wanted to express my condolences. The medical system is irrevocably broken. My son suffers from anaphylaxis due to a severe peanut allergy and once we had to wait 40 minutes for an ambulance. Our call was deemed not a priority.

    Your comments on Campus Security also reminded me of when I tried to sign my son up for SFU summer camp. When pressed on their anaphylaxis protocol, I was told camp staff cannot call 911 and must contact campus security. Having worked at SFU in another life, no one answers the phone. So we opted not to send my son to camp there. Time is of the essence.

    I am infuriated UVic doesn’t take responsibility or accountability in light of hard facts. The lack of integrity is baffling and I am ashamed as an alum of that university!!!

    I pray that with your determined efforts that things will change. I applaud the both of you for pushing for this and have sent an email to my MLA, a cabinet minister and Mr. Eby. Election year is here and now is the time to push for change! God speed.

  24. Steve Avatar

    I am so sorry for your loss! We must demand better of our institutions, government and society!

  25. Nicole Avatar

    I’m so sorry to hear about Sidney’s loss of life. As someone with a young daughter I appreciate your courage and kindness in sharing your story and educating others. I had no idea Narcan/Naloxone could be administered without harming an unconscious person. Thank you for sharing this information and for the good work you are doing to advocate for change. May Sidney be remembered always.

  26. Traci Avatar

    A tragic loss. Cailin (Sidney) was a beautiful young girl who was loved and admired by many, and will forever be remembered well by all those whose lives she was a part of. My daughter was fortunate to be on the competitive dance team and dance instructor team with Cailin. She was a role model for so many young dancers and a friend to everyone. I loved watching her dance over the years and chatting about it. I also admired her mom do a grand job of raising such an amazing human. Cailin was like her mom in so many ways- compassionate, caring, kind hearted, and courageous. She was always trying to be helpful to others, so it comes as no surprise that despite the worst tragedy imaginable, they are doing everything possible in trying to ensure this never happens to anyone ever again. Incredible strength and compassion.
    Thank you Caroline for fighting for justice for Sidney and a change to ensure a better future for others.

  27. Scott Falby Avatar
    Scott Falby

    I’m reading this with extreme sadness. This is just so unfair for Sidney and her family. Why would university students take strong drugs on a Tuesday night? What did they think they were taking? I support the family’s attempt to investigate, and there is many of us that are following this tragedy. I’m just so sad for all of us, and I hope this family receives as much support as possible.

  28. Vandanna Naidu Avatar
    Vandanna Naidu

    This is beyond tragic and heartbreaking. So sad that in Canada the province of bc the lack of simple life skills missed others to help . 🙏🏿

  29. Jim Sawchyn Avatar
    Jim Sawchyn

    Thank-you for sharing your powerful and tragic story so publicly in the times colonist today. The detail was heart-wrenching but serves as a call to action for your daughter and so many others. I have several kids at uvic, and the senselessness and suddenness of your experience struck me deeply and should lead us all to seek active changes, big or small, in our communities.

    Jim Sawchyn

  30. Brian Christie Avatar
    Brian Christie

    I’m so sorry for your loss and I truly appreciate you doing all of this to help keep others safe. I live in constant fear of this happening to my children, and grieve for you and the thousands of others who have lost children to this epidemic. I support your letter and suggestions.

    Dr. Brian Christie, Ph.D.
    Island Medical Program, UBC
    Medical Sciences, UVic

  31. Charlotte Avatar

    I am so deeply sorry for your loss. Sidney was an amazing young person. Thank you for advocating on behalf of others.

  32. UAE Avatar

    I live in the UAE in the Middle East. I am going to talk to the university here about what they are doing to be prepared for an incident like this to avoid a repeat.

    Thank you for the effort to help educate everyone.

    Wishing you strength.

  33. Brian Keely Avatar
    Brian Keely

    I am very sorry to hear about this. The most infuriating – and INCRIMINATING – fact here is that there were TWO students passed out. How could they BOTH be having a seizure, or BOTH have diabetes, or BOTH be pregnant, or BOTH suffer an aneurysm, low blood sugar, or ANY kind of medical event SIMULTANEOUSLY BY COINCIDENCE?!?? Once ANYONE saw there were TWO YOUNG PEOPLE DOWN IN BRITISH COLUMBIA suddenly unconscious how could it be ANYTHING but Fentanyl in everybody’s mind at that point?? She died of widespread, abject stupidity. Amongst all/most present. DID 911 dispatch really ask if BOTH girls were PREGNANT?? that is insane. Our society is too dumb to describe in words. R.I.P. Sydney, it sounds like she was a smart young woman, the kind that our world desperately needs. Unbelievable that all concerned were not screaming for naloxone.

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