Proposed Safe Injection Site Proving Controversial

A proposed safe injection site in downtown Windsor seems to have support from neighbours, but opposition from officials.

The AIDS Committee of Windsor and the Windsor-Essex Community Health Centre have submitted a joint application for a temporary overdose prevention site.

The application is one of 16 in Ontario.

Supporters argue safe drug consumption sites can help deal with the growing problem of opioid abuse and prevent overdose deaths.

Downtown resident Steve Woodman feels a safe injection site could do a lot of good. "They need something. Some of them need to be — they just need help."

The proposed site would be set up on Pelissier St. which Woodman feels is the best spot. "This is where it has to be. This is where it needs to be. All the IV drug users seem to be down here in the core. Constantly we're picking up used syringes and needles," he says.

However, Windsor's police chief says while he supports the community partners making the application, he won't support a safe injection site.

As heard on CTV Windsor, Al Frederick stresses drug possession is grounds for an arrest and his officers can't overlook the law. "We just can't ignore the fact that, outside of that safe injection site, it's illegal to posses. And that's really the distinction I'd like to make."

If approved, the Ministry of Health would cover 90% of the funding for the safe injection site.

A decision won't be made until after the June 7th provincial election.