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East Village Residents Want Calgary Drop-In Center Overdose Prevention Service Plans To Be Paused

The East Village area is a great place, but some residents fear that the proposal to create an addiction recovery service at a drop-in center in Calgary will overturn its revitalization. I am afraid that

The plan includes an overdose prevention site. DI executive her director Sandra Clarkson said something had to change.

"The status quo is not enough," said Clarkson.

"We consider recovery-oriented services, including monitored consumption sites and overdose prevention services similar to withdrawal management or detox, and recovery transition programs while working on those housing.

This plan came shortly after the imminent closure of a consumption site supervised by Sheldon M. Chumir Health Centre. rice field. There is no set date for removal, and Clarkson said DI will be a good place for some of these services. There is another suggested place for overdose prevention.

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"This year, to date, she predicts 1,400 drug addiction reversals within our institution." she said.

"We do regular toilet checks because we have a 10 minute window to find someone before brain damage sets in and we die."

} READ MORE: New East Village Safety Hub Addresses Calgary Community Concerns

Clarkson understands community resistance to DI plans, but , to keep the engagement going.

``These are groups of people left behind by many systems...the collective failure of many systems - and we are the catch-all to create pathways. We need to find creative and innovative ways to work with people," she said.

André Van Dyke is a member of the Rivers District Community Action Alliance. He and hundreds of residents and business owners attended his three public consultations on the proposal.

Andre Van Dijk, member of the Rivers District Communities Action Alliance. Loren Andreae/Global News

said he was looking for

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"Our biggest concern is the lack of adequate funding. Money needs money, because of the crime and social chaos that comes with it," Van Dyke said.

According to the 2018 Crime and Disorder Report issued by the Calgary Police Department, crime rates were recorded near Sheldon M. occupy a share.

"(A) Violent crime increased by 47%, burglary increased by 45%, and vehicular crime increased by 63%," Mr Van Dijk said. "The conclusion is directly attributable to the service provided at Sheldon Chummia."

Steve Zinn has lived in the East Village for nearly 20 years.

"We came here knowing DI was here - and the Salvation Army - and we embraced it," he said. 71} "We have a responsibility to be part of the solution, but the neighborhood goes sideways with every additional social service, especially one involving drug dealers."

Given the saturation of social services, Gin said the project was too big.

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"At least with the current information we have, I don't think we can offer these services effectively. No," he said Mr. Gin.

"This he cannot stay in one place... This problem is of international scale and must be owned by the whole city."

In the fall has more community engagement sessions planned. The state and police have pledged to come to the table for the ongoing debate.

"It's not ideal at this point to push it forward based on the sentiments we hear," Clarkson said.

issued a statement.

"The Calgary Police Department will work with social service agencies and the communities we serve to find collaborative solutions to address the needs of vulnerable Calgarians struggling with addiction. We are committed to working with key stakeholders, including:

Mike Ellis Deputy Minister for Mental Health and Addiction Spokesperson Eric Engler said more Albertans will recover. He said the state will continue to work with DI so it has the opportunity to pursue

"The Alberta government is building a comprehensive, recovery-oriented treatment system," Engler said.

"That's why we're working with the Calgary Drop-In Center to provide on-site medical detox and overdose prevention services to help people break free and recover from addiction.

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