Strategy Development & Implementation
The opioid overdose crisis in Vernon is ongoing and urgent requiring the coordination and collaboration of many partners in the community. From September 2018 to April 2019, 25 community partners worked collectively as Harm Reduction Action Team (HART) to create Vernon's Harm Reduction and Opioid Response Strategy. The resulting strategy reflects the voices of those with lived experience, Indigenous cultural perspectives, and diverse community partners who acknowledge their role in addressing the crisis from a multi-faceted harm reduction approach.
HART's Strategic Goals are:
- Reduce opioid deaths and overdoses
- Enhance access to treatment, recovery and social stabilization supports
- Help problem solve the community impacts of opioid misuse
- Advance reconciliation by strengthening culturally relevant supports and services for Indigenous peoples
- Reduce stigmas to increase community inclusion
Flowing from the engagement gathering processes, several recommendations emerged in four key areas: education, training, services, and resources. Members of the Harm Reduction Action Team (HART) are committed to ongoing dialogue and action to address the crisis in the city of Vernon as a coordinated opportunity to reduce and prevent overdose deaths in the community.