Most countries hide and ban drug use, trying to rule it out and get rid of the idea of usage and addictions completely, without much success. Drugs have now become and underground ‘illicit’ practice that is in fact more dangerous and more successful because of the laws banning the substances. However, one town in Canada has taking a different approach to tackling drug use, and instead have set up a centre in which people can come to take drugs.
The idea of having a safe environment for people to take their drugs is comforting, as if people are going to take them, they will do so regardless of rules and regulations. It’s good that they have a safe clean, almost clinical place to go, where they can avoid harm, possibly test their drugs using test kits, where they can use clean needles and other sterilised equipment provided by the centre. They even employ medical professionals to watch over the users in case they need any kind of assistance, or in the unfortunate case of an accidental overdose. All patient information is confidential, nicknames instead of actual names are used to sign in, and the centre is open from early morning until 4am the next day, meaning a lot of people can gain access and at any time of the day they feel they need to.
However, there has been some speculation about whether these centres are actually doing good, they are attracting recreational users as well as addicts but, as far as addiction goes, there is no set support programme or help when it comes to dealing with their disorder, leading some people to believe that they are simply just promoting drug use, rather than putting people in a safe environment and helping them overcome their addiction when necessary. Unfortunately, this point has been backed up by the fact that they have had patients overdose under their care several times, meaning it is a reoccurring event for some in their care.
Overall the opinion seems pretty divided as the whether these centres are a good idea, is it better to eliminate some of the dangers or drug taking? Or give help to overcome addiction to those who ask for it?