Lethbridge's Supervised Consumption Site Expected to Open Next Week

The facility, on 1st avenue south, will be the first in North America to allow drugs to be injected, taken orally, snorted and inhaled.

Lethbridge's supervised consumption site is almost ready to open its doors. The facility, on 1st avenue south, will be the first in North America to allow drugs to be injected, taken orally, snorted and inhaled. Community organization ARCHES will operate the facility. Executive Director Stacey Bourque, says construction has been a bit delayed because there are no other buildings like it in Alberta but it should hopefully be up and running by next Wednesday, February 28th. There are a number of safety protocols in place, including security doors, one way traffic through the building, an overdose panic button that alerts the building's staff as well a police panic button. There are even blacklights in the washrooms so users can't find a vein and overdose without anyone knowing. Bourque says she understands some people have concerns around this type of facility but research in other communities indicates it will actually reduce drug use and improve neighbourhoods. ARCHES submitted its application for a supervised consumption site last August in order to address the ongoing opioid crisis.  It was given federal approval by Health Canada back in October. Renovations to the old Pulse Nightclub building, where the facility is located, cost about $1 million. Construction is currently underway on the second phase of the supervised consumption site, which will consist of offices. Bourque says that area will hopefully be ready in a few months. -Tina Giesbrecht
 
ARCHES Executive Director Stacey Bourque
 

More from Lethbridge News

Recently Played