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DRUGS

Supervised consumption sites

Supervised consumption sites* (SCS) help save lives and create safer communities. They provide a clean, safe and non-judgemental space for people to use their own drugs under the care of medical and non-medical  staff. As relationships are developed with clients they are offered referrals to primary care, 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 at 11 Innisfil Street.  The two agencies, are working on behalf of the harm reduction pillar of the Simcoe Muskoka Opioid Strategy (SMOS).

*In Ontario, Supervised Consumption Sites (SCS) are referred to as Consumption and Treatment Services (CTS). These names refer to the same services and can be used interchangeably.  

Steps towards providing supervised consumption services in Barrie

As the journey towards providing supervised consumption services in Barrie continues, we would like to thank the SCS Site Selection Advisory Committee and the many community members and stakeholders who continue to work with the co-applicants. Applying for an SCS 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.

Preparing Applications

We are working on drafting two applications:

 

The co-applicants continue to incorporate feedback from previous community consultations as well as from neighbours and businesses directly surrounding 11 Innisfil St. into the applications to demonstrate the diverse response from the community to this site. 

A timeline is difficult to establish as we are seeking approvals and decisions from our provincial and federal governments. The following are some of the steps we currently anticipate:

Pending federal exemption approval
Pending provincial approval
Creation of SCS advisory committee focused on operations and mitigations 
Mobilization of resources and staffing
Physical site modifications
Supervised Consumption Site Services in operation

Focused neighbour and business feedback meetings

Meetings for those who live close to 11 Innisfil St, as well as the business tenants at 80 Bradford Street, were completed on July 14th, 2021.  The purpose of the meetings was to engage the neighbours and businesses, within close proximity of the proposed site, in further discussion of the drafted operation plans and mitigation strategies and to form solutions to some of the concerns that they have. 

SCS Business Meeting Mintues

SCS Resident Meeting Minutes

Community consultation Overview (October 2020 - April 2021)

Overview of community consultation results to date  
Q&A from Neighbourhood sessions.
Additional Site online survey 

Community Summary on Proposed Locations for an SCS in Ward 2 Barrie:  Summary Report (January 2021)

Barrie City Council Supervised Consumption Site (SCS) Engagement Sessions:  Summary of Findings (December 2020- January 2021) 

Site Selection Advisory Committee

To review monthly updates (Sept 2019 - May 2021) please see:  

Site Selection Advisory Committee webpage

The chosen site for a Barrie SCS is 11 Innisfil St., also known as 80 Bradford St. Unit 940. This location received Barrie City Council endorsement on May 25, 2021.The chosen site presents the best balance between serving clients effectively and ensuring an acceptable fit within the surrounding community.  Benefits of the site include:
 
  • Being near to people who would use it while being off the main street
  • Having a separate entrance from the other services available close by, providing a less stigmatizing environment and more privacy for the clients
  • Having wrap around services in the building and nearby, including those of CMHA-SC, SMDHU, and several other health and social service agencies; and
  • Being large enough to accommodate touchdown services on site

We recognize the confusion created by the different addresses associated with the chosen space. When we conducted our property search this site came to us as 80 Bradford St. unit 940. When we released the potential site locations in a media release, Mr. Steve Sperling (property owner/landlord) gave a public statement referring to the site location as 19 Innisfil St. It has since been brought to the attention of the co-applicants by Mr. Sperling, Landlord and Rob Nicholson, General Manager of the Aerarium Group that the preferred reference to the site location should be 11 Innisfil St. recognizing that the legal address remains 80 Bradford St. Unit 940. At that time, we asked the realtor volunteering on the SCS Site Selection Advisory Committee to confirm the correct address and before we went to community consultation, Mr. Sperling reaffirmed that he uses the 19 Innisfil Street address for this section of the building.  Further explanation of the request to refer to the site as 11 Innisfil St. can be found in a letter provided to the Canadian Mental Health Association, as lead applicant by The Aerarium Group.  

Although a previous tenant had used a different street address, this discrepancy can be resolved by getting approvals to rename the separate entrance at that side of the building to 19 Innisfil Street.  This will support service recipients and community partners to easily access the new SCS on Innisfil Street and will also support mail delivery.  The new entrance will meet AODA standards and will be constructed with a privacy fence or barrier.  If we move forward with the formal application process, we trust that the appropriate approvals will be provided by the City of Barrie and Canada Post.  Mr. Sperling has affirmed that he hopes that this will be resolved so that we can bring these overdue services to our community. 

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

For more information on supervised consumptions sites in general please see the Frequently Asked Questions linked here.

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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