Prompted by a drug related death epidemic that has devastated families across Alberta and indeed Canada, a former night club in Lethbridge is scheduled to become North America’s first supervised inhalation site when it opens early in 2018. To date, this facility is the only one to be granted approval by Health Canada for a site that will permit four types of drug consumption: injection, oral, intranasal and inhalation.

ARCHES, the local harm reduction organization that will be operating the facility, currently support about 3,000 clients in Lethbridge and a similar number in rural areas surrounding the city. So far, Health Canada has approved six supervised consumption sites in Alberta, including four in Edmonton and one in Calgary.

The latest provincial data from January to August, 2017 shows 315 individuals in Alberta died from an apparent drug overdose related to fentanyl, up more than 50 per cent from the same period last year. Per capita, Lethbridge’s drug overdose death rate exceeds that of both Calgary and Edmonton.

The speaker will emphasize that harm reduction is job one. She will also explain why having a safe drug consumption facility in Lethbridge, including separate rooms for supervised inhalation, goes a long way towards keeping drug users alive.

Speaker: Jill Manning

Jill Manning has her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Lethbridge and has been working in the Human Services field for the past ten years, in the areas of Domestic Violence, Developmental Disabilities, Youth, and Addictions.  Jill is currently the Managing Director for ARCHES (AIDS Outreach Community Harm Reduction Education Support) Society. Additionally, Jill has been a Rotarian for the past 8 years, and is currently the President of the Rotary Club of Lethbridge Urban Spirits. 

Moderator: Mary Shillington

Date: Thursday, November 16, 2017 Time: Noon - 1:30 pm Location: Country Kitchen Catering (Lower level of The Keg) 1715 Mayor Magrath Dr. S Cost: $14.00 (includes lunch) or $2.00 (includes coffee/tea) RSVP is not necessary

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