Kamloops addiction centre wants to hear from more drug users | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kamloops addiction centre wants to hear from more drug users

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September 27, 2018 - 5:30 PM

KAMLOOPS - A Kamloops addiction treatment centre is halfway to their goal of collecting 300 surveys from previous and current drug users, but already organizers are seeing a theme.

So far, 168 surveys have been completed and Sian Lewis, executive director with the Phoenix Centre, says they are hoping to have all surveys completed by this winter. Since July, the Phoenix Centre has been collecting information from individuals with current or previous addictions to better understand the linkage between drug patterns and overdose deaths.

“We are getting there slowly,” Lewis says. “We do want to collect the 300 in total because that’s a good healthy number to be able to see a pattern and draw things from.”

A common answer Lewis has found so far in the surveys they’ve collected comes from a question that asks drug users if they feel good, bad or neither about their drug use.

“One theme that’s coming up is that people don’t see their addiction as good or bad, they don’t seem to hold stigma,” she says, adding that addressing the way the rest of the population sees drug addiction still needs attention.

Once all surveys are completed, the addiction treatment centre will organize public community forums to interpret the data they collect.

Lewis says the details of these forums will be announced publicly at a later date.

“We really want to take this matter out of the hands of service providers, and let people with lived experience tell us what they know, so it really is about giving these people a voice,” Lewis says.

For those looking to participate in the anonymous survey can call Sian Lewis at the Phoenix Centre at 250-374-4634 and simply ask about the SenseMaker survey.

A $10 gift card will be given to those who complete the survey.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Karen Edwards or call (250) 819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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