Manitoba NDP to Take Meaningful Action on Meth Crisis

Winnipeg, MB—Wab Kinew’s NDP government would take immediate, meaningful action to address the meth crisis by implementing a plan by the Main Street Project to build detox, treatment and transitional housing beds for Manitobans struggling with addictions.

“Brian Pallister has chosen to ignore the meth crisis. Last week both the Police Chief and the Mayor demanded action from a Premier who has failed to show leadership,” said NDP Leader Wab Kinew. “Immediate, concrete action is needed to tackle the addictions crisis and we will work with everyone, including families, police, health officials and community experts to find real solutions.”

The NDP commitment is based on a proposal submitted to the provincial government more than a year ago by the Main Street Project (MSP). The proposal has languished on the Premier’s desk while Manitoba’s meth crisis worsened. It provides a comprehensive, integrated response model to help meth users access treatment while relieving pressures on other systems like health care, police and first responders:

  1. Repurposing MSP’s existing Protective Care beds to accommodate clients who are detained while high on meth. This would reduce pressure on emergency rooms and facilitate a client’s move to treatment.
  2. Building meth-specific beds within MSP’s Detoxification and Stabilization Units. Clients would stay in detox for at least ten days.
  3. Building long term meth treatment beds within MSP’s Mainstay Residence. Clients would stay in treatment between 90-365 days. Clients would have access to a nurse practitioner, psychologists and cognitive behavioural therapy.
  4. Working with community supports to transition clients from long term treatment to transitional housing. Clients would be paired with services to aid accessing housing, education, work and family supports.

MSP’s proposal requires 17.8 FTE positions and $1.5 million in capital funding from the provincial government. The NDP’s commitment is to meet the project’s capital needs and commit $2 million annually in operating funding.