Barrie – After an extensive community consultation process that included online surveys, discussions with key stakeholders including Barrie City Council members, and neighbourhood virtual consultation sessions, 19 Innisfil St. (also known as 80 Bradford St., Unit 940) has been identified as the proposed location for a Supervised Consumption Site (SCS) for the community.
The search for prospective locations was carried out by the lead applicant Canadian Mental Health Association-Simcoe County Branch and co-applicant the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit, along with a diverse and dedicated SCS Site Selection Advisory Committee. The committee is comprised of community members and partner agencies, including those who provide support to the drug using population of Barrie and others who bring perspective from local residents and businesses. A number of factors were considered in the decision by the applicants, including provincial and federal guidelines, best practices for locating SCS sites for accessibility, proximity to sensitive land uses (i.e. schools, parks, licensed child care centres, residential development and businesses), feedback received during the multi-faceted community consultation process and final input from the Advisory committee members.
“We appreciate everyone who took the time to participate in any of our consultations or reached out to us,” said Dr. Lisa Simon, Associate Medical Offer of Health for the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit. “Community consultations have been a critical part of the SCS application, ensuring that a wide range of community members have the opportunity to express their needs, thoughts and concerns so that the location can best meet the needs of people who use drugs, as well as those of the broader community.”
“As a community, we have been carefully listening to all voices to ensure that we made a balanced decision. We look forward to a continued dialogue as we move forward with the next steps in the site selection process and we recognize the importance of working together as this journey continues,” stated Dr. Valerie Grdisa, CEO, CMHA Simcoe County. “On behalf of the both agencies, thank you to the Advisory Committee members for your dedication and countless hours to get us to today.”
Selecting a location is part of the ongoing application process for a SCS site in Barrie. Endorsement of the proposed SCS location will be sought at a presentation to Barrie City Council on May 25, 2021. If endorsement is received, an application to the federal government for exemption from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and to the provincial government for their approval for funding will be completed and submitted.
For more information on SCSs, including the local SCS application history and the recent work of the SCS Site Selection Advisory committee, visit www.smdhu.org/SCS.
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