Thirty-eight-year-old James Cochrane pitched his tent here about a week ago and he’s happy to stay as long as he can.

“I feel safe here,” Cochrane said.

Island Health issued an overdose alert on Wednesday, specifically, for the 900-block of Pandora after eight overdoses in 24 hours in and outside of the safe consumption site. A shortage of shelter beds is contributing to increasing chaos on the street, according to Grant McKenzie with Our Place Society.

“Victoria is one of the few cities across Canada that doesn’t have enough shelter space for everybody. All the other major cities have opened large shelters so that people can get in and out of the cold every night. We don’t have that,” McKenzie said.