WHAT'S HAPPENING? Site Expected to Open by Labour Day, Provided Provincial Funding Secured
- The federal government announced today that Vancouver will be the first
North American city to operate a publicly supported, supervised safe
injection site (SIS).
- A key commitment made by COPE Mayor Larry Campbell during the last civic
election, the facility will provide services including supervision of
injections with emergency response to drug overdoses, injection-related
first aid (e.g., wound care), assessment and referral to primary health
care and service providers, harm reduction teaching and counselling, and
exchange of needles, condoms and other injecting equipment.
- The SIS could be open by Labour Day, provided the province does not delay
financial support for operation of the site.
- The site will be operated by the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority and
will be open 18-hours a day, with one registered nurse, one licensed
practical nurse and an addiction counsellor on staff at all times.
- Renovations of the SIS site at 135/139 E. Hastings St. will be completed
by the end of August.
- In addition to the site's approval, the federal government will provide
up to $1.5 million over four years to evaluate the success of the site in
reducing harm associated with illicit drug use and improving the health of
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
- According to the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority, provincial funding
for the SIS has not yet been finalized.
- Email provincial health minister Colin Hansen at
HLTH.Health@gems1.gov.bc.ca to call for provincial funding of the
safe-injection facility in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.