BCGEU and HEU calling for restored funding to vital addictions services

Closure of Kelowna’s Crossroads Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centre would leave Okanagan residents without any substance abuse treatment services outside of a hospital setting.

Vancouver (11 Jan. 2013) — Kelowna’s Crossroads Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centre announced yesterday it will permanently be closing its doors after 37 years of service to the community, phasing out its detox and addiction counselling services over the next three to six months.

The facility's board of directors stated that the decision to close the centre was based on ongoing funding issues with Interior Health and increasing debt.

“The Crossroads Treatment Centre is the only service of its kind in the Okanagan Valley,” says British Columbia Government and General Employees' Union (BCGEU/NUPGE) President Darryl Walker.

“Both BCGEU and the Hospital Employees' Union are calling on the Interior Health Authority to either fund it appropriately or take back the service. We cannot lose this valuable service in the valley.”

The closure of this centre would leave Okanagan residents without any substance abuse treatment services outside of a hospital setting, which is “especially troubling given the high demand for these services,” adds Walker.

"Without treatment people can lose their jobs, their homes, and the consequences for communities and families can be devastating. This service provides a cost-effective solution to addictions treatment."

BCGEU/NUPGE represents 12 workers and HEU represents about 45 workers at Crossroads including drug and alcohol counsellors, LPNs, night attendants, dietary staff, housekeepers, clerical workers, and maintenance staff.

NUPGE

The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE

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