Premier Jason Kenney was pulling no punches when talking about harm reduction this past weekend.
Kenney was asked again about supervised consumption sites during a stop on the Blood Reserve Saturday (July 25) where he announced one of two drug recovery communities for southern Alberta.
He says if people think “the harm reduction obsession” is really successful in preserving lives, just look at the downtown east side of Vancouver to see what he calls the “human carnage”.
“The truth is this,” stressed Kenney. “Handing someone deep in addiction a needle, is not a continuum of care. I don’t even think it’s terribly compassionate to simply facilitate an addiction, rather than offer a full spectrum of services for recovery and lifetime treatment. That’s the approach that we are taking.”
Kenney says he believes the recovery model is the continuum of care and compassionate approach to helping those addicted to drugs.
Recovery communities encourage participants to examine their personal behaviour to help them become more pro-social and positively engaged citizens – considered to be based on honesty, taking responsibility, hard work, and willingness to learn. The goal is for a participant to leave the program not only drug-free but also employed or in school or training.
Meanwhile, the Lethbridge Supervised Consumption Site has been under a huge microscope over the past few weeks after the government released an audit of the facility indicated $1.6 million dollars in a misappropriated public funds. Lethbridge Police are now investigating that to see if criminal charges are warranted.