A group of community organizations in Moose Jaw are hosting a week of events aimed at improving understanding of substance use disorders.
“We really want people to know that being stigmatized and treating people differently because they have an addiction disorder can prevent them from seeking help,” said Mary Lee Booth, program coordinator. of the Moose Jaw Crystal Meth Strategy Committee (MJCMSC).
“We certainly wouldn’t treat someone with diabetes, cancer or any other medical condition that way. “
Booth says data from the Moose Jaw Police Department shows simple possession and possession with intent to traffic charges have increased significantly since 2015.
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While Booth says substances like opioids are making their way into Moose Jaw, crystal meth is still the “drug of choice.”
“Several years ago a number of service organizations noticed a noticeable increase in the use of crystal meth,” said Booth, of the motivation behind the creation of MJCMSC.
“I come from health care. In our region, we were noticing that more and more people with crystal meth were coming to emergency departments and inpatient mental health units. And what we do know is that about fifty percent of people who access drug rehab centers and treatment services admit to using crystal meth.
Addictions Awareness Week events include an exploration of current drug trends in Moose Jaw on November 22, and a video screening of “Stop Mething Around: A Family Affair” at the Moose Jaw Public Library on November 24. .
These events will be in person.
“The video focuses on the experience of a family member who has a loved one affected by crystal meth addiction,” said Booth.
There are two other events online, one will provide detailed background information. The other is to help parents talk to their children about the use.
In addition, the John Howard Society will be hosting a presentation on naloxone, a drug that quickly reverses opioid overdoses.
“We really want to highlight the issue of drug addiction, and in particular highlight the issue of stigma. Anyone can become addicted to a substance, including alcohol or cannabis, ”Booth said.
“It can be anyone of any gender, age, socioeconomic status. People who become addicted do not intend to. It’s really the substance, the drug, it’s the enemy, not the person who uses it.
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The MJCMSC will be joined by the Moose Jaw Police Service, Moose Jaw Public Library, Service, Medavie Health Services West, John Howard Society, Wakamow Manor Detox, Square One Community Inc., Journey to Hope and the Saskatchewan Health Authority in programming. the week.
In-person events will require proof of vaccination or a recent negative test for participation.
More information can be found online.
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