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SCS' are places where people who use drugs (PWUD) can go to use pre-obtained drugs in a safe, empathetic place, free of stigma and discrimination. SCS are shown to help reduce the harms associated with criminalized drug use and help empower PWUD to make decisions regarding their own care.
PWUD have the opportunity to work with healthcare and harm reduction professionals to access education, sterile equipment, supervised consumption services, social services, and a rapid response in the event of an overdose.
In short, SCS save lives while empowering individuals to make decisions affecting their own lives and creating long term change.
SCS Wraparound Services refers to a comprehensive approach to providing support and services to
people who use drugs. These services are typically community-based and aim to create a customized, coordinated, and holistic plan to address the various challenges faced by individuals.
Here are some examples of wraparound services that may be provided by an SCS:
Supervised Consumption Sites provide a safe, empathetic space for people who use drugs to consume unregulated and criminalized substances under the supervision of under the supervision of highly trained staff, including Registered Nurses and Primary Care Paramedics. By doing so, SCS help reduce fatalities associated with drug use. SCS also rebuild trust between people who use drugs and health and social services providers which facilitates access to services when they are ready for them. SCS are proven to have a higher success rate than traditional “hard on drugs” approaches.
Harm reduction agencies provide sterile/new supplies to people who are seeking them. The provision of these sterile supplies helps reduce the transmission of bloodborne or bacterial infections. This provides agencies the opportunity to connect with people who use drugs, share harm reduction knowledge and strategies, and connect members with services and treatment options as requested.
Services provided by Réseau ACCESS Network and other SCS/CTS/OPS are focused on Harm and Risk Reduction. Referrals to treatment services are offered when requested by PWUD. By utilizing a SCS and outreach services, PWUD have greater autonomy to make decisions regarding their health, well-being, and substance use. This creates opportunities for linkages to health and social care including treatment when and if requested by PWUD.