Poll

Its it working or not

Yes
0 (0%)
No
5 (55.6%)
Yes but changes are needed
1 (11.1%)
We need a 40 bed treatment centre
3 (33.3%)

Total Members Voted: 8

Author Topic: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program  (Read 14788 times)

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Offline bluuray

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Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« on: April 15, 2008, 06:12:18 PM »
Is this program really working.

Offline Bonzai

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2008, 06:15:06 PM »
Well, to be precise it really 'ISN'T' an exchange program.  They hand them out and there is no longer a requirment to turn in your old needle so this is why you now see spent needles in ally ways and parks in the centre town area.  Boy, I wouldn't want my child to play in those parks...would you.

Offline Dagwood

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2008, 08:09:55 PM »
I'm not happy at all with this program.

I realize what it is they are trying to do...but it's an incompetent approach to the problem itself.

It's like saying..we want you to quit drinking...but here's a home brew kit so you don't have to worry about collecting bottles to pay for the habit (I dunno)

What I do know is that the only way to treat the problem is to remove these people from the area's that they can find the crap.
And I don't mean a rooming house, or treatment facility in downtown Ottawa where one need only walk around the corner....out from under prying eyes and get hooked up with a fix.

Nope...what they need to do is Build the facility (Good Idea)...but do it in a remote area where the closest town is 5 - 10 hours away...and there is no chance of bumping into a dealer on the street.  That way... addicts can recover over a period of months without ever having the temptation to look for that fix because there is no where to find it.  Put all the amenities of a resort there...and then and only then..can you help a drug addict.  Everything else is futile and does nothing but make advocates of it rich, while desperate people are treated like puppets.

Want to help...then isolate these people so the can get a proper recovery.  Getting over the itch is half the battle  :thumbsup:
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Offline Broken Bones

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2008, 09:25:48 PM »
But Dags, in our society you can not help a person who suffers from addiction until they declare they want help. But i do agree with your approach and would have no issues having my tax dollars pay for such a treatment facilities.

Offline bluuray

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2008, 09:23:29 AM »
Let me say this i don't like this program for many reasons.NOw with that said there is steps that can be taken to clen this up.

1)This is  a illegal activity like it or not.Let the police do there job and arrest all people taking part.

2)The medical officer is obligated to protect the safety of the public.When there is a person with a infectious
disease the officer has the right to have that person arrested.

What aslo really conerns me is what some of these people who are for it say.They more or less don't see anything wrong with the program.A member of the safer ottawa was quoted in saying the city expects to hand out about 2 million needles in 2008.

Offline Jasonf6

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2008, 10:01:45 AM »
But Dags, in our society you can not help a person who suffers from addiction until they declare they want help. But i do agree with your approach and would have no issues having my tax dollars pay for such a treatment facilities.

I agree also, but to have our tax dollars pay for treatment facilities there would be a decrease in other areas or a tax increase.  Which would you prefer?

Offline stone169

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2008, 10:51:26 AM »
We need to get these people off of the streets.  That's what needs to be done.  Either throw them in jail or help them to fix their problem.  Handing out needles doesn't fix the problem.
There are good coaches and there are bad coaches, the real question is "Do you want this person to be a role model to your kids for the next 6 months".  That's the question you have to ask yourself.

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Offline Broken Bones

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2008, 11:13:13 AM »
I agree also, but to have our tax dollars pay for treatment facilities there would be a decrease in other areas or a tax increase.  Which would you prefer?

Not sure what you are trying to say.

I am of the position, if things are done properly and efficiently, I have no issues with my taxes being increased to help pay for worthy programs, it is when money is wasted on ineffective programs that i am sure many people dislike.  The needle "exchange" more like supply program is useless, ineffective and a waste of our tax dollars. A treatment center similar to what Dagwood had proposed is a better use of those funds as you get the addicts into a safe environment, get them off drugs, help reduce crime, take them away from the environment where they can easily feed their addiction, and all in all get them into a healthy lifestyle where they can then become a positive citizen rather than a street user.  Doing this I am sure will also help lower the amount of health care funds spent on treating addicts.

I was merely pointing out that the issue with the drug treatment center is that in our society you can not force one into treatment without their consent, and I believe the courts are fairly reluctant on giving a court order on doing so.

Offline OS

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2008, 11:59:54 AM »
Saw this in a letter to the editor, put the city logo on all the free needles given out.  That will show how much the program is contributing, or not, to the problem of needles lying around. 

I like the intent of the program but I question how much good it does.  An addict will inject multiple times per day, and usually isn't the most disciplined person out there.  Even with free needles I think there is plenty of needle re-use going on.  It is likely a lot less but I question the benefit for the funds.  Now they want $200k to clean up the free needles left on the ground. 

I also wonder if there is a market to sell the needles.  Addicts need cash, and this is something that may be worth a few bucks.  I don't know the answers but it seems like the advocates and media don't ask these types of questions.

Offline stone169

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2008, 12:15:54 PM »
I like the intent of the program but I question how much good it does.  An addict will inject multiple times per day, and usually isn't the most disciplined person out there.  Even with free needles I think there is plenty of needle re-use going on.  It is likely a lot less but I question the benefit for the funds.  Now they want $200k to clean up the free needles left on the ground. 

$200k to clean up?  Wasn't there a debat earlier this year that said it only cost something like $12k to keep the program going or was that for the crack pipes?
There are good coaches and there are bad coaches, the real question is "Do you want this person to be a role model to your kids for the next 6 months".  That's the question you have to ask yourself.

Go Sarnia Jr. Sting Minor Midget MD!!!!!

Offline OS

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2008, 12:45:07 PM »
snippet from Citizen yesterday:

  Another $200,000 a year is needed to do a better job of collecting needles used by drug addicts in Ottawa, city officials say.

   The number of needles carelessly discarded and then reported to the city has gone from 813 in 2000 to 2,029 last year. Medical officer of health Dr. David Salisbury says he agrees there is a need to do more to "get needles off the street," though he says no one is known to have contracted a disease from a discarded needle.

   The City of Ottawa hands out about 300,000 needles a year to drug addicts to reduce needle re-use and stem the spread of HIV and hepatitis. Dr. Salisbury says handing out needles has helped decrease the spread of HIV infection.

   But Dr. Salisbury says changing patterns of drug use -- cocaine users injecting 10 or 15 times a day, for instance -- mean "an enormous" number of needles are being used among the estimated 3,000-to-5,000 addicts in the city.

   To gather up the needles, the city proposes to expand its Needle Hunter program by adding crews to patrol Vanier, Hintonburg, Centretown and Byward Market-Lowertown. The city is getting bids for the provision of these crews. As well, the city would add a public health inspector, equipped with a vehicle, to respond quickly when calls come into the city's 3-1-1 call centre.

   Somerset Councillor Diane Holmes says citizens get upset when they call the city to report needles, then find no one comes to pick them up.

   "People are very worried about needles in parks and alleyways," she said.

   The budget for needle pickup would go from $50,000 to $250,000 a year. The city would ask the provincial government to pick up the cost since the needle program is a public health program required by the province.

---------------------------------

Offline Broken Bones

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2008, 02:24:02 PM »
I think Dr. David Salisbury needs to do a little research of his own.  If I recall correctly two children a few months ago picked up a needle and pricked themselves, and as a result were going to be treated for HIV, etc immediately as I guess any test results at that time would not show accurate results due to how soon they would have been done after possibly contracting the disease.

Why is it that the city opts to have this program, yet needle pick up is an afterthought? Should the public safety of the majority of the public not come first?  To me, picking up used needles ASAP seems to be serving more than the "needle exchange" is.

Offline OS

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2008, 03:26:47 PM »
Why is it that the city opts to have this program, yet needle pick up is an afterthought? Should the public safety of the majority of the public not come first?  To me, picking up used needles ASAP seems to be serving more than the "needle exchange" is.

Another letter writer had another idea, which is to provide retractable needles. More money but so is spending $250k on pickup.


Offline Broken Bones

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #13 on: April 20, 2008, 08:49:18 PM »
Just wanted to chime in on this one again. I have been reading many times that this program shoudl require users to bring in 1 needle in exchange for a clean one. But yet we have a problem with discarded needles on our streets right?  So why not require the users bring in two needles in exchange for a single clean unused needle.  While enabling the addicts (which I do not agree with), you are actually in turn reducing the number of needles that are laying on the streets and sidewalks of this city with a 2 for 1 policy.

Offline Metalhawk

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #14 on: April 20, 2008, 08:52:07 PM »
Just wanted to chime in on this one again. I have been reading many times that this program shoudl require users to bring in 1 needle in exchange for a clean one. But yet we have a problem with discarded needles on our streets right?  So why not require the users bring in two needles in exchange for a single clean unused needle.  While enabling the addicts (which I do not agree with), you are actually in turn reducing the number of needles that are laying on the streets and sidewalks of this city with a 2 for 1 policy.

But you could then encourage assault on other addicts in order to get an extra needle.
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Offline OS

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #15 on: April 20, 2008, 09:52:15 PM »
Logical solutions being implemented through addicts often run into problems.

Offline Broken Bones

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #16 on: April 20, 2008, 10:00:09 PM »
But you could then encourage assault on other addicts in order to get an extra needle.

I guess then we would need some other exchange program, bring in a dead addict, get 10 needles.  Because be damned if we do anything to enforce the laws they are already breaking. And hey, just think, this also helps reduce the number of needles on the street, as it lowers the number of addicts!

Offline Metalhawk

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #17 on: April 20, 2008, 10:03:42 PM »
I guess then we would need some other exchange program, bring in a dead addict, get 10 needles.  Because be damned if we do anything to enforce the laws they are already breaking. And hey, just think, this also helps reduce the number of needles on the street, as it lowers the number of addicts!

I know this is wrong, but  :A_laughing_matter: :A_laughing_matter: :A_laughing_matter:
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Offline CupintheCapital

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #18 on: April 21, 2008, 11:12:14 AM »
Bottom line is :

As a society, as a whole, we are tragically shortsighted and our politicians do not have the mandate to really change anything--they are always in re election mode. 

There are countless other "issues" that suffer from the same lack of vision and will.  As long as we all play tug of war with our tax dollars we will always be patching things up. 

It must be said though, we are talking about finding solutions for a complex human nature, not inanimate objects or designs.  We will never stop addtiction outright and trying to manage addicts is like herding cats---good luck.

T
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Offline Broken Bones

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Re: Ottawa Needle Exchange Program
« Reply #19 on: April 22, 2008, 10:07:21 AM »
Just watched this clip...

http://watch.ctv.ca/news/w-five/capital-shame/

Wow, we have our own police chief trying to fight this, we have addicts themselves saying what they need, video evidence the exchange is not working and a premier who wants to do nothing more than ignore the issue in his home town.

If this is how the municipal, provincial, and federal governments want to treat this, I am not sure I want to live here anymore, I am not sure I want to raise a family in this city.

Ottawa is unique in a way that we have 3 levels of governments that have their hands in our daily lives, yet neither one wants to step up to the plate, passing on the responsibility to the next guy.

I know this problem doesn't only exist in Ottawa, but we are nothing done that does nothing more than enabling the addicts.