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Supervised consumption sites

Supervised consumption sites (SCS) help save lives and create safer communities. They provide a safer and clean space for people to use their own drugs under the care of nursing and other staff. They can connect clients to doctors, treatment and other health and social services.

The Canadian Mental Health Association Simcoe Branch and the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit are applying to operate a supervised consumption site in Barrie. The two agencies, with the support of the SCS Site Selection Advisory Committee, are working on behalf of the harm reduction pillar of the Simcoe Muskoka Opioid Strategy (SMOS).

As part of this application process, the Barrie community was invited to offer their opinion on two proposed locations for a SCS in the city by filling out an online survey between October 7 - 30, 2020. The survey is now closed and a report with the findings from the survey will be shared with the public by the end of November.

Applying for a SCS site in Barrie is just one example of the collaborative community work that is underway in the region to address opioid use and overdoses. See more community actions here.

For more information on opioids or supervised consumption sites call Health Connection 705-721-7520 or toll-free 1-877-721-7520.

To review monthly updates on progress to date please see:Site Selection Advisory Committee

November 14, 2019: Barrie Police Service response to Councillor Sergio Morales’ letter to the Barrie Police Services Board dated July 4, 2019

August 12, 2019: Barrie Council decides not to hire an outside consultant and supports SCS applicants continuing the search for an appropriate location and further community engagement, with the support of the advisory committee.

August 9, 2019: SCS applicants establish a site selection advisory committee to conduct a fresh review of site locations in Barrie.

June 24, 2019: SCS applicants submit report on the potential sites that were considered for Barrie Council consideration. Barrie Council defers decision on 90 Mulcaster site proposal, votes to retain a consultant to review prospective sites.

June 4, 2019: Barrie City Council votes to defer site selection until next council meeting and requests further information.

May 27, 2019:

May 15, 2019: Neighbourhood consultation was held to provide opportunities for residents to review site proposal and mitigation strategies for 90 Mulcaster, and share further feedback.

May 7, 2019: Evaluation of the public consultations for a SCS in Barrie is completed. A report summarizing the evaluation of the consultations was released (this version includes later updates). A shorter document containing highlights of the report also available.

April 24, 2019: Site selection investigation concludes with announcement of recommendation for 90 Mulcaster Street.

January–March 2019: Public, stakeholder education and consultation period on proposal for an SCS in Barrie.

No, site selection is currently ongoing as per Barrie City Council’s request at their August 12, 2019 meeting. A SCS Site Selection Advisory Committee was created to advise and support the Barrie SCS applicants to further explore and review SCS site options in Ward 2 of Barrie. This process was interrupted for several months by the declaration of the global COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, but is once again underway.

For details on the current site selection process underway, please see the Site Selection Advisory Committee.

Currently two sites for a SCS in Ward 2 Barrie are under consideration:

  • 110 Dunlop Street West, Unit 4 (at the back of the building)
  • 31 Toronto Street (free standing building at the back of the property)

An extensive consultation process will be implemented to choose the best site for this service. Updates on the progress of this process can be found here.

CMHA SCS Infographic 2019

SCS help save lives and create safer communities. SCS are part of a harm reduction approach that aims to provide:

  • Overdose prevention (naloxone, oxygen)
  • Harm reduction supplies including needles and other safer drug use equipment
  • Client education

Connection to a variety of services including: addictions treatment, health care, mental health, housing and/or social supports.

The benefits of supervised consumption sites include:

  • Reduced rates of overdose deaths and hospital visits
  • Reduced public drug use and needles discarded in the community
  • Increased access to other services including access to treatment when people are ready
  • Reduced spread of blood borne infections like HIV and hepatitis C
  • Reduced stigma related to substance use
  • Cost effectiveness
  • Preliminary data for 2019 ranks Barrie third among large municipalities in Ontario for opioid overdose emergency department (ED) visit rates, behind St. Catharines and Oshawa.
  • In 2019 there were 88 opioid-related deaths in Simcoe Muskoka, with 26 of those deaths in Barrie.
  • In the five months of 2020, there were 19 confirmed deaths in the City of Barrie, compared to 26 deaths for all of 2019.
  • The central north area of Barrie (which includes downtown) had 8 times the rate of opioid overdose ED visits in 2019 than the provincial average, and three times the overall Barrie average. This includes 50 visits among those identifying themselves as homeless.
  • More local statistics can be found via the Simcoe Muskoka HealthStats website


For more information on opioids or supervised consumption sites call Health Connection 705-721-7520 or toll-free 1-877-721-7520.
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