Local business owner welcomes freeze of supervised consumption site

By CHAT News Today
June 4, 2019 - 4:27pm Updated: June 4, 2019 - 6:56pm


MEDICINE HAT, AB -- The decision to halt funding for a supervised consumption site in Medicine Hat is being welcomed by a local business owner.

The United Conservative government announced the funding freeze on Friday.

The decision has halted three proposed supervised consumption sites in Alberta from moving forward. They’re located in Calgary, Red Deer and Medicine Hat.

Alberta’s new government plans to launch a review on the sites, looking at the provinces response to the opioid crisis, and how to find a balance between community concerns and the life-saving services they provide.

HIV Community Link is behind the Medicine Hat site, and won’t be able to run or open it without provincial funding.

The site has been a contentious topic since the location was announced in January, with many residents expressing concern about the opioid crisis, and others about location, crime, and consultation.

Gregg Martin, owner of Pattison Funeral Home just a few metres from the proposed site, says he’s happy the review is taking place.

“It’s nice to have a government that now that listens to the concerns of their people, they’re going to reexamine the situation,” says Martin. “Study it, start it hopefully from square one and give it a thorough examination instead of just ramming it down your throat.”

The review panel has yet to be selected, and it’s unknown how long the review will last.

Rotary Centennial Trail to run along South Boundary Road