Outreach team tackles drug addiction, stigma in Fort St. John

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A Northern Well being funded peer outreach workforce is hitting the streets of Fort St John tackling the stigma of drug dependancy. 

Terilynn Schultz and Neil Bramsleven have been out Wednesday night time, touring the neighbourhood to supply meals, hygiene kits, first assist, naloxone kits, hurt discount provides, data on detox and therapy centres, and heat clothes for these in want. The group additionally cleans up rubbish and affords protected cleanup of needles.

“We’re using friends with lived and residing expertise, serving to to try to break the stigma of drug dependancy,” stated Bramsleven. “It’s not simply right here. We’ve had firm vehicles pull over. It’s not simply the folks you consider that endure from dependancy, its working folks as effectively.”

There have been a record 29 fatal overdoses in northeast B.C. in 2020 — 21 in Peace River North, 5 in Peace River South, and three in Fort Nelson. There have been eight deaths in the northeast within the first two months of 2021.

Schultz says the peer outreach workforce is ready to meet a spot within the wants of the town.

“It’s going rather well to this point. Folks actually prefer it as a result of we’re doing the after hours. Between 9 to five they’ve the ladies’s useful resource centre and the medical clinic, however after that they don’t have anything going,” she stated.

A cell therapy centre is predicted to launch within the subsequent couple months, and a van is presently being prepped and outfitted in Vancouver, stated the pair.

“We’re making an attempt to decrease our overdose price as effectively, as a result of it’s so excessive proper now,” stated Schultz. “Within the meantime, Northern Well being is supplying us with a van, a cell unit we’ll be driving round and hopefully stopping extra overdoses.”

She added {that a} everlasting overdose prevention website has been authorised to open subsequent 12 months.

The group operates from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and seven:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Tuesday by way of Saturday.


E-mail reporter Tom Summer season at tsummer@ahnfsj.ca



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