Do safe-injection sites make sense?

I found this topic to be particularly interesting due it’s controversial nature. Many individuals have strong opinions about safe- injection sites. Supporters believe that they help regulate health risks while opponents argue that these sites encourage drug-use. This post will explore both sides.

What are safe-injection sites?

1207px-Syringe_Needle_IV.jpgSafe injection sites allow drug-users and addicts to use drugs with fresh needles provided by the government. The needles are disposed rather than reused after an individual injects themselves. The aim is to discourage addicts and drug-users from sharing used needles which can lead to transferring diseases.

The Liberal government unlike the former Conservative government supports drug injection sites as they believe safe-injection sites serve a financial and health benefit for Canadians. There have been numerous studies that have supported the ideology that injection sites help reduce the risk of health epidemics such as Hepatitis C and HIV/AIDS.
Some additional facts suggest:

1. Treating someone with hepatitis C can cost up to $60,000 over the course of six months (this is typical treatment). Hence, it’s a hefty cost for the government to pay.

2. The use of safe-injection sites has proven to reduce the spread of health epidemics.

3. Nurses watch the addict inject the drug to prevent the user from overdosing. Consequently, statistics suggest that death due to overdosing has also decreased where these sites are used.

4.Β  Insite, a popular safe-injection site in Canada has proven to reduce the spread of infectious diseases and crime within a ten block radius of the safe-injection site

Is it any surprise the Liberal government is interested in this plan?

Conversely, opponents argue that safe-injection sites enable drug-users and provide a safe haven for drug addicts to get their high. It is also argued that addicts should be encouraged to address their addiction rather than provided with a medical practitioner to watch them inject themselves.

Perhaps the most common argument against safe-injection sites is that crime will increase in safe-injection premises and no one wants a safe-injection site in their neighbourhood. The main concern is often the well-being of the children in that particular area – will they be more prone to use drugs?

What do you think? Are there safe-injection sites where you live? How well have they worked?

Did you like this piece? Did you learn something new? If so, please press “like” and follow! Thank you in advance.

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11 comments

  1. I began reading this blog and understood the rehabilitation and safety aspects of the safe-injection sites; however, I am not okay with my taxes going to support the addictions of these users. If the Liberal government wants to help facilitate their drug problem let them pay with their own money, but do not take it away from the people who are working. Stop the drug use, get people help if they want the help, or crack down on the drugs.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts Sonya! I think many opponents of the bill feel the same way you do. I think you’ve articulated that perspective very well and better than I had. Thank you πŸ™‚ I’m also glad that my post was able to convey some of the rehabilitation and safety aspects of safe- injection sites. I hope you’ll keep visiting and leaving thoughtful comments! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No problem. Not only is the prevention of HIV and Hepatitis an issue there is something about enabling drug users that bothers me. What can we do to prevent people from using drugs I think is the bigger picture. Giving it more thought I see that the pros outweigh the cons in these circumstances.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Not really familiar with these but from what you have written it seems like a good idea. I am sure that people don’t want a safe injection site in their area, however I am sure they also don’t want used needles and other paraphernalia littering the areas where they live too, and besides a safe injection site can be made to look descreet. Perhaps they should put them away from the main populated areas.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Supporters of this idea would agree with you. I believe the objective is to place these sites in less populated areas so avoid too much attention. I also agree with your point about serious consequences of having dangerous needles laying around where children have access to them. Thank you for sharing your thoughts! I hope to keep hearing from you in the future πŸ™‚

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  3. Interesting points made here, however looking more into safe injection sites I figured this could not be a good idea because of the harm it could lead to. Imagine the feuds between people who have the need to inject, crosses paths with someone he/she hasn’t paid? Let’s say someone tries to raid the injection site knowing drugs will be there and potentially causing harm harm to innocent people. The reality of drug users is that they are not healthy minded people, and I think would do something desperate and dangerous to get more drugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad to hear that you explored the topic even further after reading this post. I believe opponents of the bill would share similar sentiments as you have listed above. Have you come across any examples where this has happened? I believe the Insite location in Canada has been relatively conflict free so far. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts, it truly is appreciated. I hope to hear more from you in the future!!

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  4. I agree with this bill. I’m from Alberta and I have seen a lot of things around the city. The safety of children are my biggest concerns because as a mother I have to protect my kids and the last thing we need to have is drug paraphernalia laying on the streets or around the city parks.
    The onsite have proven useful and with a place for drug users to go police enforcement can monitor and intercept problems as they come. It’s a great idea and should be implemented.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for sharing your ideas Crystal! It’s fantastic to get the perspective of someone who has seen the outcome of implementing such an idea. You can actually speak to the results and effectiveness of the program much better than those of us who have not had exposure to it. I really appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts! I hope you’ll follow the blog and keep commenting in the future as well. πŸ™‚

      Like

  5. This subject is totally new to me. In fact, it is so new that I can hardly form a opinion. But I do feel that those who are opposing safe-injection sites have a point. It is better to get rid of one’s addiction. We don’t have any safe-injection site where I live.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts Sonia! This subject is very complex and has been a subject of debate for a long time. The aim is to protect non-drug users by removing needles off the streets and reducing crime. The government wants to avoid the spread of disease. The implementation of the program is difficult to carry out without some objection. A lot of the drug users aren’t recreational drug users but rather addicts and some are homeless individuals who require the drug to stay alive to avoid starvation and the cold in the winter. Some of these individuals are addicted to a point where withdrawal symptoms can lead to seizures and violence behaviour so they have to take small dosages to survive. There are also facilities to help individuals if the individuals choose to take the route. I hope that shed some more light on the complex issue. I’m sure many opponents would agree with your stance.

      Thank you again for sharing your thoughts πŸ™‚ I hope to hear more from you in the future !

      Like

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