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Community Drug Strategy

In recent years, Lethbridge has been negatively affected by escalating drug issues.

These effects include drug-related behaviour in or around the downtown area as well as increasing petty crime and discarded needles and other drug paraphernalia in public places.

At City Council's direction a number of strategies and programs have been initiated and implemented.

 

Related Work

     

Community Drug Strategy Phases          

  
Accordion Answer
  

The Community Issues Committee passed a resolution to receive the Community Led Drug Strategy as information and thanked the consultants, Robin Parsons, MBA, CPF, CTF and Dave Robertson, CPF, for their work in developing the strategy on March 25, 2019. The consultant's full report can be found here which includes a list of recommendations to proceed with should City Council bring them forward.

  

This phase of consultations will identify desired responses to the drug crisis, any barriers to implementing those responses, and will produce the elements to create a draft community-based drug strategy. 

The What We Heard report will inform Phase 2 consultations which will involve a community strategy session in late November with up to 40 targeted stakeholders such as EMS, business people, social service providers, police, housing agencies, and harm reduction service providers.

  

Four facilitated sessions were held Oct. 10 & 11 where stakeholders, business people and any other interested community members could discuss how the drug epidemic is affecting them and share ideas on constructive solutions to deal with the negative effects in the community. A total of 288 people participated. 

This phase of the consultation process produced a What We Heard report, which was presented to City Council Nov. 5.
 

View the Nov. 5 presentation to City Council members

  

On July 9, 2018, City Council held a community meeting to learn about the drug crisis and needle debris in our community. A panel of health, addictions and harm reduction specialists were on hand to present information and answer questions from the public as well as City Council.

View the specialists' presentations:

  

Seeking to bring people from all sides of this issue together to collaborate on solutions, City Council voted on Aug. 7, 2018 to hold a series of facilitated community sessions where any interested residents could share how the ongoing drug epidemic is affecting them and collaborate on potential solutions. Council also voted to establish a special committee to oversee the development of a community drug strategy. 

In mid-September, residents were invited to participate in four community consultations held over two days, on Oct. 10 and 11. These sessions are part of a broader consultation process, which includes three phases to be conducted over approximately 10 weeks aimed at achieving the following objectives:

  • Provide opportunities for Lethbridge citizens to discuss their experiences and suggest solutions
  • Define and agree upon challenges that can be addressed
  • Identify community-based strategies to address these challenges
  • Identify any gaps or barriers to implementing these strategies
  • Recommend terms of reference that set out the mandate and scope of work for the ad hoc committee established by City Council