June 22, 2018
Update on needle distribution and community safety
ARCHES announced that in order to balance the health and well-being of the general public with the health and well-being of people who use drugs, the agency is temporarily suspending the distribution of drug-related harm reduction supplies through its Walking Outreach program.
For the time being, this program will focus its efforts on the collection of inappropriately-disposed of syringes in the community, encouraging people who use drugs to access the Supervised Consumption Site, providing referrals to street-involved populations in Lethbridge as well as the provision of basic needs materials such as water, food, socks, etc.
In order to address community concerns around needle return rates, ARCHES will track separately needles returned to their facility versus needles picked up in community, effective July 1, 2018.
ARCHES is also discontinuing harm reduction supply distribution from its 6 Avenue South location.
May 7, 2018
Coalition updates City Council members: opioid crisis is continuing to escalate,
use of Supervised Consumption Services site exceeding expectations
Coalition representatives updated members of City Council, noting that the scope of the opioid crisis continues to escalate locally and across Alberta, and demand at the new Supervised Consumption Services (SCS) site in Lethbridge is already surpassing expectations.
Watch the presentation and view the accompanying slides
February 6, 2018
Supervised Consumption Services Open Houses
Are you interested in learning more about Supervised Consumption Services (SCS)in Lethbridge? This is your chance to tour the new facility at 1016-1 Avenue South, prior to it's operational opening date!
ARCHES will be hosting public open houses at the SCS facility on the following dates:
- Friday, February 23 from 7-8 p.m.
- Saturday, February 24 from 11 a.m.-noon & from 1-2 p.m.
Participation in these tours is BY PRE-REGISTRATION ONLY. Please email ARCHES' Managing Director, Jill Manning, at email@example.com to RSVP.
*Additional tours will be scheduled if necessitated by public interest*
October 18, 2017
The Government of Alberta announced that Lethbridge and Edmonton are the first cities in Alberta approved to establish Supervised Consumption Services for people at risk of overdosing on drugs.
ARCHES, a Lethbridge-based harm reduction agency, received approval from Health Canada on their application, which was submitted at the end of July. Renovations at the approved site, 1016-1 Avenue South, are getting underway, and ARCHES hopes to have the site operating by early January 2018.
In his comments to media following the announcement, Mayor Chris Spearman commended the provincial and federal governments for their swift action responding to the crisis in Lethbridge. He also applauded ARCHES and the many local organizations they partner with on the Lethbridge Executive Leaders Coalition on Opioid Use.
August 9, 2017
With the full support of the Lethbridge Executive Leaders Coalition on Opioid Use, ARCHES, a local harm reduction agency, submitted a comprehensive application to Health Canada on July 31, 2017.
Alberta's Health Minister is putting her support firmly behind this application to establish Supervised Consumption Services in Lethbridge to respond to the growing crisis of opioid use.
Read the full news release including comments from Alberta Health Minister Sarah Hoffman and details on the site identified for Supervised Consumption Services in Lethbridge.
ARCHES Community Engagement Report-July 2017
June 19, 2017
After completing a community needs assessment and studying community addiction strategies worldwide, the Lethbridge Executive Leaders Coalition on Opioid Use determined that Supervised Consumption Services would be an effective intervention model to reduce harm from drug use and help save lives.
With the full support of the Coalition, ARCHES prepared and submitted an application in late July 2017 to Health Canada to establish Supervised Consumption Services in Lethbridge.
A list of potential sites has been developed and is expected to be narrowed down through the application process.
Stakeholder Sessions during June 2017
Prior to submitting this application, the Coalition hosted focused stakeholder information sessions throughout June, 2017 with law enforcement, emergency medical responders, corrections, and others.
Community Discussion Sessions during July 2017
The Coalition hosted a series of community discussion sessions in July 2017. A total of nine Community Discussion Sessions were held to provide information and answer questions from Lethbridge residents.
Schedule for Community Discussion Sessions:
- Tuesday, July 4, 6-8 p.m. at Crossings Library Branch
- Wednesday, July 5, 1-3 p.m. at Lethbridge College (Sunflower Room)
- Thursday, July 6, 9-11 a.m. at Alberta Health Services (Lethbridge Centre)
- Monday, July 10, 9-11 a.m. at City Hall (Culver Room)
- Wednesday, July 12, 6-8 p.m. at Boys & Girls Club, 1405-8 Avenue N.
- Thursday, July 13, 1-3 p.m. at Alberta Health Services (Lethbridge Centre)
- Monday, July 17, 1-3 p.m. at Crossings Library Branch
- Wednesday, July 19, 9-11 a.m. at Lethbridge College (Sunflower Room)
- Thursday, July 20, 6-8 p.m. at Alberta Health Services (Lethbridge Centre)
Community questions or comments can also be emailed to: firstname.lastname@example.org
May 1, 2017
A number of Coalition representatives addressed members of Lethbridge City Council at a public Community Issues Committee meeting to discuss the provincial and local impacts of opioid addiction as well as the broad-based, collaborative response that the Coalition is developing to respond to the local crisis.
Watch the presentation and view the accompanying slides
Read the May 1, 2017 news release