A Voice For Downtown Barrie BIA Members

A decision will be made in the coming weeks on the location of a Supervised Consumption Site (SCS) and the Downtown Barrie BIA wants to ensure that all BIA members and supporters have the opportunity to educate themselves and share their voices with the decision-makers.

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What’s the Issue?

The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) has narrowed a large list of potential locations for a Supervised Consumption Site (SCS) in Barrie down to two, which are both in the heart of downtown Barrie:

  • 110 Dunlop Street West, Unit 4
  • 31 Toronto Street

Both proposed locations will have an impact on our downtown community and Barrie’s reputation as one of the safest places to live in Canada. Both proposed locations may also impact downtown Barrie as a key economic driver for the city. Our downtown needs to feel safe. It needs to appeal to businesses and residents who want to build, invest and grow.

We are asking members of the Downtown Barrie BIA and supporters to send a letter to key decision-makers to let them know how important a strong, vibrant city and downtown core are for all businesses and residents.

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What’s the Solution?

The Downtown Barrie BIA supports a better choice for Barrie.

We understand the impact the opioid crisis is having on our city. In fact, we have previously supported a proposed SCS location in Barrie. We understand that it affects those with addictions, as well as our community’s first responders, business owners, and residents.

We believe a community care hub that can provide a full suite of care services is a more effective model of delivering the care services that our community needs. There are many who share a belief that a centralized, coordinated and accessible care hub is a better model for Barrie. The Downtown Barrie BIA has been and will continue supporting dialogue between these partners who are willing to work together to make this vision a reality.

We also recognize that a project of this scale would take years and that an alternative solution to what is currently proposed is needed now. Community partners are working to identify alternate locations and/or service delivery models that have not yet been considered, including the Downtown Barrie BIA. We are participating in and supporting the site selection process and will continue to do so, while we also support a stronger long-term approach for our city.

We would like to see a better solution for everybody – those who need the services, the health care providers, the residents of Barrie and the businesses of Barrie.

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Send a letter to key decision-makers today and urge them to fully explore ALL options before making a decision on the location of a Supervised Consumption Site (SCS) in Barrie.

Call on them to consider our city's reputation as a safe and vibrant place to live, work and play. Let them know that you support a better solution for Barrie.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Downtown Barrie BIA’s position on a Supervised Consumption Site (SCS)?

The Downtown Barrie BIA understands the impact the opioid crisis is having on our city. We have seen the data and we know our members witness related issues firsthand daily. The opioid issue affects those with addictions, as well as our community’s first responders, business owners, and residents.

This is exactly why we have been supporting discussions between partners who share a belief that a broader care model, which may include an SCS, is a better long-term solution for those with addictions and for our city overall.

We also recognize that such an option is years away from development and there is need for a more imminent solution. This is why we have joined the Site Selection Advisory Committee and are working collaboratively with the health experts and other stakeholders to ensure all options for an SCS are considered so the best choice for Barrie is made.

Has the Downtown Barrie BIA blocked or delayed the progress of selecting a location for a Supervised Consumption Site (SCS) in Barrie?

No. The Downtown Barrie BIA has been actively engaged in the Site Selection Advisory Committee around proposed SCS sites in Barrie. In fact, the Downtown Barrie BIA previously supported a proposed SCS location in Ward 2 that was ultimately rejected following further community consultation. We are also supporting discussions between partners who share a vision around a community care hub model that delivers a full suite of care services, which may include an SCS, in a welcoming, accessible space. We believe this is a better long-term solution for our city that supports both those with addictions and the growing needs of our broader community.

How is the Downtown Barrie BIA supporting the Supervised Consumption Site (SCS) process?

The Downtown Barrie BIA is an active member of the Site Selection Advisory Committee, working collaboratively with the health experts and other stakeholders to ensure all options for an SCS are considered so the best choice for Barrie is made. We are also supporting dialogue between partners around the concept of a community care hub model that delivers a full suite of care services, which may include an SCS, in a welcoming, accessible space. We believe this is a better long-term solution for our city and we are facilitating conversation between others who are willing to make this vision a reality.

Why should stakeholders like the Downtown Barrie BIA and its members even have a say on the delivery of health care services in the city?

The Downtown Barrie BIA works to ensure its members have a voice on all matters of importance to them. This includes the ongoing site selection process for an SCS, just as it would for any decisions being made about developments that may affect our downtown. Our downtown core attracts business, residents, and tourists alike making it a key economic driver for Barrie. The addition of new services and infrastructure – be that public spaces, new buildings or SCS services – all have the potential to impact those who live, work and play in this area.

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