“Treating People Like Humans”: Another Reflection on Vancouver

Rev. Katherine B. Ray Harm Reduction, Protestant Perspectives

Our May 2 newsletter described the way in which harm reduction, including Insite, the only legal, supervised injection site in North America, can save lives and improve health. We offer the testimony of Rev. Edwin Robinson, Director of Urban Strategies and Live Free for Faith in Texas (part of the People’s National Network), who participated in this study tour to Vancouver, Canada on April 11-13.

A Visit to InSite: Building Community Through Harm Reduction

Rev. Katherine B. Ray Harm Reduction

Mary Nelson is Executive Consultant to the Parliament of the World’s Religions and member of Bethel Lutheran Church.  She is joined by two staff members of InSite. I am intimately familiar with the devastation of drugs in my west side Chicago community, but I came to the Vancouver British Columbia visit as a novice to the “harm reduction” approaches of dealing with drug addiction. Our visit, organized by the founders of InSite, changed all that.

A Visit to InSite: Meeting Addicts Where They Are

Rev. Katherine B. Ray Harm Reduction

By Rev. Alexander E. Sharp Every day in Vancouver, Canada, 600 to 1,000 drug addicts enter a non-descript, box-like building to inject themselves under medical supervision with whatever drugs they have brought with them, usually heroin, cocaine, or meth.  They are participants in InSite, the only legal supervised-injection site in North America.

An Easter Invitation: Come to Vancouver

Rev. Katherine B. Ray Harm Reduction

By Rev. Alexander E. Sharp Nearly 25 years ago, a nurse named Liz Evans in Vancouver, Canada, was told that unless addicts stopped using their drugs, nothing could be done. They might as well be left to die. She refused to accept this view.  Instead, she resolved to use the hotel she was managing to house people who were unwelcome elsewhere and to provide humane care for drug addicts, whether they changed or not.