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Insite - Toronto IV drug injection site being discussed.

AGTO

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The houses on Trinity are more like $350-500K, the nicer townhomes on Gilead and commercial blocks on King are more like $600-700K.
..and the new urban towns, with nothing but drywall between them are $800K....I didn't realise these were all in different neighbourhoods though.

I agree the clinic is out of place and can't wait for it to be moved to a more appropriate location.
It only opened a few years ago, why would they relocate it?
 

Urban Shocker

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Obviously it makes sense for such facilities to be located near where the people who use them live. Just as Dundas and Sherbourne has changed drastically from what it was like when the affluent built mansions near there in the mid-19th century, so it will eventually evolve from what it is now; in the meantime we must deal with it as it is now, and help the people who live there now.
 

lesouris

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From The Star:

Toronto closer to getting safe injection site
September 30, 2011

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Megan Ogilvie


Toronto is one step closer to having a supervised drug consumption site now that the country’s highest court has ruled Vancouver’s controversial Insite clinic can stay open.

Public health experts, health-care workers and harm reduction activists have long said Toronto could benefit from staffed medical clinics where addicts can inject or use illegal drugs, such as cocaine and heroin.

Friday’s landmark ruling, which orders the Harper government to grant Insite exemption from federal drug laws, has removed one of the main obstacles that prevent such clinics from opening in Toronto.

But those calling for safer consumption sites worry provincial and municipal politicians will continue to rely on ideology rather than evidence in their decisions about funding such clinics.

Zoe Dodd, a hepatitis C worker in Toronto, said the city desperately needs safer consumption sites to curb the spread of disease and avert unnecessary deaths.

“We’ve lost an incredible amount of people in the community due to overdose deaths,” said Dodd, also a member of the steering committee for Aids Action Now. “If we had them (safer consumption sites) here, these people (might) still be with us today.”

Dodd and 20 other harm reduction activists met at a local health centre Friday morning to wait for the Supreme Court of Canada decision. Though they cheered after learning the court ruled in favour of Insite, some voiced concerns about whether there was the political will to tackle the issue in Toronto.

“It’s really scary right now,” Dodd said. “Politicians seem to be so willing to let ideology trump the evidence.”

A long-expected study on whether Toronto could benefit from supervised consumption sites is expected to be released later this fall — 18 months after researchers, who have remained tight-lipped, first said it would be complete.

The Toronto and Ottawa Supervised Consumption Assessment, which was approved by Toronto council in 2005, is investigating whether Toronto needs such sites, and whether a site should be fixed or mobile, single or multiple, stand-alone or integrated into other facilities.

The study has been controversial, sparking heated debates in city communities and at Toronto City Council.

Mayor Rob Ford has said he does not support supervised consumption sites as a form of drug treatment.

“I've always been opposed to those,” Ford told reporters on April 15. “I’ve never been in favour of safe injection sites.”

But preliminary research, released in April at a Toronto HIV conference, found community members and other groups were not overwhelmingly opposed to supervised consumption sites if the goal was to reduce disease and get drug use off city streets.

In April, Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson told the Star Insite is a crucial health-care facility for his city because it saves lives, reduces crime and saves tax dollars otherwise funneled to emergency rooms, policing and jails. Robertson warned Toronto politicians against letting political ideology overrule evidence-based science in their consideration of supervised consumption sites.

Doris Grinspun, executive director of the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario (RNAO), said Friday’s ruling, coupled with the many studies that show safer consumption sites save lives, should be enough to get political backing for such clinics in the province.

“This is a treatment, an intervention, that saves lives and improves health,” said Grinspun. The RNAO made arguments in favour of Insite when the Supreme Court heard the case in May.

Grinspun challenges the leaders of Ontario’s political parties to publicly state whether they would fund safer consumption sites in the province. British Columbia has funded Insite since 2003.

“I would like to ask: ‘Will you put roadblocks up now that the federal high court has ruled, reaffirming the evidence that says this is a viable form of treatment that saves lives and improves health? Will you prevent these from coming to Toronto or Ottawa or anywhere else they are needed?’ I want an answer to that.”
 

Tulse

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There is no way that Ford will allow safe injection sites. Although I suppose a determined city council could potentially overrule him, I doubt there is enough support on council for this.
 

lesouris

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Different patterns of drug use here in Toronto - probably not of as much benefit as in DTES.

AoD
While that may be true and may explain the lack of political will to get this done in Toronto (compared to the support Insite has gotten from Vancouver and the BC government), injection drug use does happen here:

From Toronto Public Health's Drug Strategy:

Injection drug use is more common among youth who are homeless or street-involved than among other youth. One Toronto study found that 33% of youth surveyed had injected drugs in the previous six months, and 18% of this group had injected two to three times a day.
 

Gavin

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It's common to come across needles in downtown Vancouver, in Toronto, never. In 35 years of living in Toronto I have never come across a needle.

And I live in the core, meaning very close to Yonge/Dundas. So I know what I say.
I've lived in Toronto all my life in the core, gone to school @ jarvis collegiate/ heard about needle park allan gardens, yet I have yet to come across a syringe.
I work at Queen and Church and see needles every single day. They're not on main sidewalks, but in every side street and alley.
 

Gavin

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I've never seen a heroin addict get rehabilitated.
My mother in law has.

When I go over to pick up my NRT supplies at CAMH I can see a large jug of what looks like orange juice with tiny paper cups next to it behind the prescription counter which I'm pretty sure is Methadone...
Yes, that's it.

That's a fair point. Safe injection sites could be located at or near hospitals, just like methadone distribution centres.
Methadone is distributed at more pharmacies than you'd think, often nowhere near a hospital.

And this argument really helps draw a line between people who believe in evidence-based policy and ideology. To the NIMBYs, safe injection sites reduce property crime in the immediate area so if it's crime you're worried about then you should be all for them. The location in Vancouver also reduced drug-related deaths by, what, 35%?
 

spider

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To the NIMBYs, safe injection sites reduce property crime in the immediate area so if it's crime you're worried about then you should be all for them.
So if the druggies who all steal or break other laws to acquire the drugs no longer do so in the immediate area of the shooting gallery that is good? They are still acquiring their drugs illegally but are smart enough to make the street that they shootup in look pleasant by moving the ugly part of their addiction a couple of blocks away. Great solution!
 

nfitz

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There is no way that Ford will allow safe injection sites. Although I suppose a determined city council could potentially overrule him, I doubt there is enough support on council for this.
He might not have a choice. With the Supreme Court creating a precedent that not having an injection site creates harm, then I'd think an independent organization would simply be able to create a site, and then seek court protection.

Funding would then be the issue, rather than permitting.
 

Tulse

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He might not have a choice [...] an independent organization would simply be able to create a site, and then seek court protection.
Good point. While I can guarantee that Ford wouldn't fund a safe injection site, he may have no say at all if a private organization set one up.
 

Admiral Beez

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And here we are again. Government hacks forcing their harm reduction strategies onto neighbourhoods, without any real consultation with the local residents.

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/201...gs-but-lets-increase-honesty-too-dimanno.html

Why not deal with the issue of why there are so many drug addicts downtown, i.e. the shelter/homeless industry's utter concentration downtown east, instead of servicing them. Move the shelter beds into smaller groups across the city, and have a small harm reduction service in each one, not just for safe injections, but whatever self-harming predilections people have.
 
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kbdid

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These sites already have needle exchanges and services for various addictions, nothing new is being forced on these neighbourhoods, other than perhaps keeping people from shooting up outside etc.
 

AlvinofDiaspar

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Why not deal with the issue of why there are so many drug addicts downtown, i.e. the shelter/homeless industry's utter concentration downtown east, instead of servicing them. Move the shelter beds into smaller groups across the city, and have a small harm reduction service in each one, not just for safe injections, but whatever self-harming predilections people have.
The city is already shifting homeless shelter to a decentralized model.

AoD
 

JGHali

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And here we are again. Government hacks forcing their harm reduction strategies onto neighbourhoods, without any real consultation with the local residents.
You prefer to have them shooting up and/or overdosing in the exact same neighbourhoods except on the street? Immediately upstairs from Inside is "Onsite" which provides inpatient detox services, and the whole setup is designed to steer IV drug users into addictions and mental health treatment simultaneously.

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/201...gs-but-lets-increase-honesty-too-dimanno.html

Why not deal with the issue of why there are so many drug addicts downtown, i.e. the shelter/homeless industry's utter concentration downtown east, instead of servicing them. Move the shelter beds into smaller groups across the city, and have a small harm reduction service in each one, not just for safe injections, but whatever self-harming predilections people have.
Yeah, I'm sure an op-ed from Rosie Dimanno should be taken at face value on this issue. I don't know much about Norway's experience, but Insite has been an evidence-based success in harm reduction. I am not at all naive to the difficulty of dealing with this patient population (even just last night!), but I don't have much patience for know-nothing opinion writers, especially one who aspires to be the Star's Margaret Wente.
 

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