Pubdate: Mon, 19 Jun 2017
Source: Calgary Herald (CN AB)
Copyright: 2017 Postmedia Network
Author: Shawna Taylor
Page: A9


Re: Plans inch ahead for city's first safe drug-use site, June 15

I just saw a news article regarding the safe injection site opening at
the Sheldon Chumir Health Centre and had to write this.

My daughter has an addiction to fentanyl and has been in recovery for
six months. We were a normal family, strict with our kids, told them
not to do drugs. This wasn't going to happen to us. Until it did.

No matter what we tried, help was hard to come by. Her first wait for
rehab was almost six months and it took almost 1.5 years of addiction
before my daughter was ready to participate in her treatment and she
was admitted to a facility that helped save her life. This was after
numerous hospital trips, overdoses and frustration trying to find
resources as well as 24-hour care to make sure she didn't access the
drug her body craved.

I realize a lot of people think that those addicted to drugs don't
deserve our tax dollars or these facilities, but what we need is
education and more of it. These safe injection facilities offer much
more than a safe place to use; they provide professionals and options
for treatment to those who have reached their end and have nothing
left, not even hope.

I heard a man say that it would attract "druggies" to the area. I hate
to tell you but they are already there and they are the people in the
restaurants, offices and everywhere around you - normal people.

The majority of overdoses in Calgary haven't even been in the
downtown. They are in the suburbs and homes of middle-class families
and in Starbucks bathrooms. They are students and stockbrokers and
grandmas. It is happening to everyday "normal" people.

This is an epidemic and because of stigma and shame, it will continue
to kill. You don't have to agree with it but please get all the
information before judging.

It could be your child, as it is mine.

Shawna Taylor, Calgary
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