Sign Here to Support Addiction Treatment

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I AM EVIDENCE PETITION, as a person in recovery, a recovery ally, and a person who supports all pathways to recovery. 

This petition is calling for the immediate resignation of Jana Abetkoff, Clinical Operations, Director of Quality Standards and Practice at Interior Health. 

Her recent statements in the Penticton Western News are discriminatory, stigmatizing, harmful, and exclusionary. Supporting an article that flatly states "Residential treatment centres don’t work, harm reduction does" harms people who use drugs, and those seeking recovery by taking choice off the table and restricting people’s autonomy in healthcare.

She says in the article “Going to a treatment centre is intrusive and it plucks them away from their community, family and job” “Literature shows that residential treatment is not effective”  

PLEASE NOTE THE TITLE OF THE ARTICLE WAS CHANGED AFTER A FULL DAY OF CALLS WERE MADE TO THE CEO OF INTERIOR HEALTH. HOWEVER, YOU CAN NOT CHANGE THE CULTURE BY EDITING A TITLE.

On April 14, 2021, we marked the fifth anniversary since the opioid crisis was declared and with 7,000 lives lost in BC alone. Now more than ever we need accessible diverse networked services.

There is published research, program evaluations, and living experience evidence for all pathways to/of recovery and harm reduction including managed use programs, bed-based services and abstinence-supported environments. This evidence should not be permitted to be minimized and dismissed by a false narrative from someone who is key in what is available for the community. 

The Science on Recovery and Bed Based Services, and photos of the altered article can be found here https://recoverydaybc.ca/evidence-that-supports-bed-based-addiction-treatment-and-recovery/ 

We must not give up on people who use drugs, when they ask, we should walk with them through the continuum of care, which includes government-funded bed-based treatment, harm reduction services and healthcare services throughout BC.

BY SIGNING THIS PETITION

1)    I Request that Interior Health Authority immediately retract statements made by their employee Jana Abetkoff in the Penticton Western News

2)    I Request that Interior Health Authority acknowledge that bed-based addiction treatment services are part of the continuum of care for individuals struggling with substance use disorder

3)    I Request the immediate resignation of Jana Abetkoff for the harmful, divisive and dishonest comments made without regard for the significant negative impact those comments would have on people who use drugs, people who identify as being in recovery, and people yet to seek care and their families.

4) I Request Mayors of the Cities in Interior Health create a motion that states Discrimination, and stigmatization of individuals seeking recovery is unacceptable from any person of power in the healthcare system, and these comments and behaviour must stop. Also question how bed-based services will play a role in the future of their cities to combat addiction 

5) I Request the Honourable Sheila Malcomson begin to create a categorized list of treatment interventions for addiction, that outline treatment goals, so people who use drugs can make an informed decision on their recovery goals based on all options. This will stop the infighting between healthcare interventions and offer a client-centred approach.  This will prevent health care leaders from implementing involuntarily forced interventions on marginalized populations. 

IF YOU OR SOMEONE YOU KNOW IS IN NEED OF HELP GO HERE:

https://www.stopoverdose.gov.bc.ca/get-help  

TO READ THE EDITED ARTICLE GO HERE: 

https://www.pentictonwesternnews.com/news/residential-treatment-centres-dont-work-harm-reduction-does-interior-health/

Attention Interior Health Corporate Office
Board Chair: David Douglas Cochrane
President and CEO: Susan Brown

Minister of Health Honourable Adrian Dix

Minister of Mental Health and Addiction Honourable Sheila Malcomson 

Liberal Health Critic MP Trevor Halford 

CC

Mayor of Cranbrook Lee Pratt and Council

Mayor of Vernon Victor Cumming and Council

Mayor of Penticton John Vassilaki and Council

Mayor of West Kelowna Gord Milsom and Council

Mayor of Kelowna Colin Basran and Council

Mayor of Kamloops Ken Christian and Council

MLA Norm Letnick

MLA Dan Ashton

MLA Harwinder Sandhu

MLA Tom Shypitka

BC Liberal opposition leader MLA Shirley Bond