People don't want safe injection site in Cambridge's cores, mayor says
Public input meeting draws more than 150 people
Cambridge residents don't want a safe injection site in the core areas of Hespeler, Galt and Preston, Mayor Doug Craig says.
That was the overwhelming message at a public input meeting held in Cambridge Wednesday evening.
- Waterloo Region Public health wants your thoughts on supervised injection
- Cambridge residents debate supervised injection sites
It's the second meeting the Region of Waterloo has held to discuss where to put one of three supervised injection sites planned for the area.
More than 150 people showed up and a few dozen spoke, Craig said.
He said the majority of the people seemed to support the site, but there was "a very loud message to regional council that, 'We don't want, in Cambridge, any safe injection sites within any of the three core areas within the city.'"
The full house at City Hall tonight for the <a href="https://twitter.com/RegionWaterloo?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@RegionWaterloo</a> public input meeting on potential supervised injection sites demonstrates the level of interest and commitment to community health and well-being in <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/cbridge?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#cbridge</a>. Lots of info and insights being shared. <a href="https://twitter.com/ROWPublicHealth?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@ROWPublicHealth</a> <a href="https://t.co/4qsDLoDwhy">pic.twitter.com/4qsDLoDwhy</a>—@cityofcambridge
'Devastating effect' on cores
A key group was concerned business owners who Craig said are worried about the size of the downtown areas in Cambridge versus bigger core centres like Kitchener or Waterloo.
He said they think a safe injection site in those areas would have a "devastating effect."
"Cambridge city council, at its last meeting, in fact endorsed a motion that it did not want to have safe injection sites in the Galt area or in the Galt core area or the other two core areas in the city," he said.
"That motion I'm taking to the region and asking them to adopt that. That would allow the region to look at other sites outside the core areas."
- Safe injection sites in Kitchener and Galt to be debated at regional committee
- Cambridge councillors will visit 3 cities with safe injection sites in coming weeks
Craig couldn't name any locations that might work, and said instead, he doesn't want a safe injection site near schools or residential areas.
"We'll find an area or a place that I think will meet most of the criteria in terms of community acceptance because I think it's a great part of what we're trying to do — what the region is trying to do," he said.
Craig said he'll bring Cambridge council's motion to exclude the site from the three core areas to regional council on Tuesday.