The Alberta authorities says it’ll shut the supervised consumption website at Calgary’s Sheldon Chumir Well being Centre and substitute it with two new websites.
“We might be relocating the present supervised consumption website, which has been extremely disruptive to the neighbourhood, and as a substitute add SCS [supervised consumption site] capabilities inside two present associate organizations’ services located in additional acceptable areas,” mentioned Justin Marshall, press secretary to Affiliate Minister of Psychological Well being and Addictions Jason Luan, in an emailed assertion Thursday night.
The assertion got here after the Calgary Herald first reported the province’s plan to shut the positioning, which has been the topic of controversy within the inner-city Beltline group because it opened in 2018 as a part of the province’s technique to fight the continuing opioid disaster.
On the facility, people are capable of choose up hurt discount provides — resembling new needles — and use their medicine in designated cubicles underneath the supervision of a registered nurse educated in overdose response.
Advocates for folks with addictions have applauded the ability — the one one among its sort presently working in Calgary — for saving lives, whereas critics have complained about a rise in crime and requires police service within the neighborhood.
Final yr, Mayor Naheed Nenshi mentioned it was a mistake when he initially advisable the province open a single, centralized consumption website for the complete metropolis.
“I recommended, let’s have one [site], put it in an enormous health-care facility the place there are many wraparound providers, and let’s research the heck out of it and determine the way it’s working, the way it’s not working,” Nenshi mentioned on the time.
“That was my suggestion, and [the province] took the suggestion. This was a mistake.”
Coun. Evan Woolley, who misplaced his brother to an overdose and whose ward consists of the present consumption website, mentioned he is been assured by Luan’s workplace that the Chumir facility won’t be closed with out “a number of different services” first being opened.
“We’d like extra [supervised consumption] services, however we additionally want remedy beds, and it is actually incumbent upon the provincial authorities to ship on the commitments it made,” Woolley mentioned in an interview Thursday night.
Marshall would not say which associate organizations the province is planning to work with on new supervised consumption websites in Calgary, nor the place they might be situated.
“Our authorities is dedicated to a top quality and simply accessible system of look after each psychological well being and addictions that features a full continuum of helps, together with providers to cut back hurt,” he mentioned.
“Albertans deserve no much less. Folks with dependancy deserve no much less.”
Greater than 1,300 folks died from overdoses in Alberta final yr, based on provincial knowledge.
“We’re confronted with this psychological well being and addictions disaster in our group,” Woolley mentioned. “Persons are dying each single day from overdose.”