Addictions cash came with a catch: Manitoba Liberals

The Manitoba Liberals say they are calling out a bluff from the Pallister government over how much cash the province is actually dedicating to the Addictions Foundation of Manitoba.

Government says $976K increase given to Addictions Foundation of Manitoba, but Liberals note $800K cut order

Manitoba Liberal Party Leader Dougald Lamont is calling out Manitoba Health Minister Kelvin Goertzen for saying funding to the Addictions Foundation of Manitoba has gone up by $985,500 this year. (Jeff Stapleton/CBC)

The Manitoba Liberals say they are calling out a bluff from the Pallister government over how much cash the province is actually dedicating to the Addictions Foundation of Manitoba.

"It's really frustrating really what we're pointing out is that the government isn't telling the truth when they say that they're giving more money to the Addictions Foundation of Manitoba," Manitoba Liberal Party Leader Dougald Lamont said Thursday night.

Lamont and the Liberals called out Manitoba Health Minister Kelvin Goertzen for saying funding to the Addictions Foundation of Manitoba has gone up by $985,500 this year.

Amy McGuinness, press secretary for Health Minister Kelvin Goertzen, above, said the province asked the AFM to find $800,000 in 'efficiencies' in areas such as vacancy management, advertising and administrative costs. (Jeff Stapleton/CBC)
What Lamont said Goertzen has left out is that the cash given to AFM came with a catch from the Tories that the organization find $800,000 in savings and a 15 per cent reduction in management.

Goertzen's office maintained Thursday that frontline services were unaffected.

Amy McGuinness, Goertzen's press secretary, said the province asked the organization to find $800,000 in "efficiencies" in areas such as vacancy management, advertising and administrative costs.

'It is a genuine crisis'

Lamont said meth is in every corner of Manitoba and called out the province for not having a plan.

"It is a genuine crisis."

Robert Lidstone is a freelance public policy researcher, writer and social justice advocate who lives and works in the Point Douglas and St. Boniface areas of Winnipeg. (Supplied/Robert Lidstone)

"This is something that's affecting people from all across the province from every walk of life and it's ruining people's lives not just from addiction but financially people are losing their homes, losing their jobs, losing their families."

Robert Lidstone, who is recovering from a meth addiction, said the government should invest in supports now before the situation gets worse.

"Things are going to progressively deteriorate until we decide that we got to address this in a more proactive way," Lidstone said.

The Addictions Foundation of Manitoba didn't immediately return a request for comment Thursday night.

About the Author

Austin Grabish

Reporter

​Austin Grabish is a reporter for CBC News in Winnipeg​ where he files for TV, web and radio. ​​Born and raised in Manitoba, Austin has had an itch for news since he was young. He landed his first byline when he was just 18. Before joining CBC, he reported for several outlets with work running across the country. He studied human rights in university and holds both a degree and diploma in communications.​ Email: austin.grabish@cbc.ca