The street value of meth in Winnipeg is among the cheapest in Canada, slightly behind Calgary where meth appears to be cheapest, according to numbers from police departments around the country.
A gram of meth is currently priced at roughly $50 in Winnipeg, and a hit is going for $5 to $10, according to police.
The street value of a hit of meth in Calgary starts at $2 and goes as high as $10, while a gram is going for $50.
Toronto, where meth isn’t as popular, appears to have the highest prices. Police said a single hit sells for as much as $15, and a gram for as high as $110.
Regardless, the drug is much cheaper today than a decade ago. In 2009 in Winnipeg, for instance, a gram of meth was selling for $300 in Winnipeg, and a hit set back users $30 to $50.
Police attribute the drop in meth prices to the increased availability.
Marion Willis, the founder of St. Boniface Street Links in Winnipeg, agrees.
“It’s everywhere you look and its easy to get,” Willis said.
“It’s become quite appealing to a very broad range of drug users.”
Since the drug is so affordable, she said it attracts vulnerable people, including the homeless.
“They’re now using meth because you don’t have to panhandle for more than just a few minutes to get enough money to buy meth and that’s a 16-hour high,” Willis said.
In comparison to other drugs, a gram of cocaine in Winnipeg currently costs up to $100, a gram of fentanyl can be purchased between $80 and $220 and a gram of heroin between $300 and $500, according to police.
Police said illicit drug prices are constantly fluctuating, and it can be challenging to estimate their cost for reasons such as the quality and the amount taken.
For one addict, the cost means constantly relapsing.
Jason, which is not his real name, says he dropped out of high school to sell crack before he was caught and spent nearly a year in jail in 2015.
“I was making $1,000 a day, so I dropped out of high school because, I’m like, ‘Forget this, I make more than my teacher.”
After jail, crack was no longer an easy sell and he started using meth.
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Jason has relapsed more than 15 times, he said. When he talked to Global News, he had been sober for 35 days.
“The meth scene is really, really dangerous now and it’s really really relentless,” said Jason.
“Who we gonna go jack? which house are we going to shoot up?”
“When I’m high on crystal meth, I’ll steal your camera.”