Vote for safer consumption sites

Vote for safer consumption sites in Ottawa

On October 27, cast your ballot for harm reduction in Ottawa by voting for a candidate who supports supervised injection.

CSCS has contacted all of the candidates for city councillor in the 2014 Ottawa municipal elections to find out where they stand on safer consumptions sites. As we receive responses, we'll update this page to indicate which candidates are in support of our campaign, or at least open to a discussion of the issue. If you have information on a candidate not listed below, please contact us.

The next few years will be a critical time for establishing supervised injection services in Ottawa - let's make sure that we have councillors who trust evidence over ideology when it comes to community health.


Ward 1 Orléans

Opposed to SCS: Bob Monette

Ward 2 Innes

  • Fred Sherwin - "I would support creating a supervised injection site but it would depend on the proposed location."

Ward 4 Kanata North

Opposed to SCS: Matt Muirhead

Ward 7 Bay

  • Alex Cullen - "I support Ottawa Public Health on this - that such a supervised site would help reduce the health risks associated with drug injections. On that basis I would support such a facility."

Opposed to SCS: Mark Taylor

Ward 8 College

  • Craig MacAulay - Craig is personally in favour of supervised injection sites but would consult with constituents before voting on the issue.

Opposed to SCS: Guy Annable, Scott McLarens, Rick Chiarelli

Ward 10 Gloucester-Southgate

  • Meladul Haq Ahmadzai - "If elected, I Ahmadzai would be in full support of a supervised injection site at the Greenboro Community Centre. According to recent studies, drug users would really benefit from the initiative. I've been clear in my support for legalizing drugs in the media."

Ward 12 Rideau-Vanier

  • George Atanga - "I will support it because it will reduce a lot of harm caused to citizens."
  • Marc Aubin - "I believe that our public policy choices should be driven primarily by evidence based approaches. My view is that drug addiction is a very complex issue that should be addressed via a broad array of interventions. The most important of those should be prevention and adequate access to rehabilitation programs. I am open to the evidence that there is also the need for programs focused on harm reduction such as SCS."
  • Mathieu Fleury - "Mathieu has stated that he is supportive of looking at an Ottawa option for a supervised injection site, though he has said that his major concern is the current wait times for rehabilitation facilities." Note: The Ottawa Sun has since reported that Mr. Fleury "wouldn't be in favour of a supervised injection site in the ward".
  • Catherine Fortin LeFaivre - "In the presence of overwhelming evidence that harm reduction greatly increases public health through the reduction of infections, and by providing greater access to addiction services, I believe we should move forward with the implementation of a safe consumption site."
  • Marc Vinette - "It would be be a pleasure to meet with you and discuss supervised injection sites, and municipal attitudes/policies surrounding the scourge of addiction. We need a practical health-based orientation if we're ever going to make headway as a community."

Ward 13 Rideau-Rockcliffe

  • Cam Holmstrom - "I've had family members and friends who have struggled with addictions issues, and I have seen first-hand what kind of help that kind of support can be. For me, that is why I support the initiatives like a safe injection site and harm reduction strategies. As an elected councillor, I will be happy to stand up for these initiatives at the table and do what I can to ensure that we have these important supports in place to help those in need."
  • Penny Thompson - "In my first 100 days, I pledge to sit down with you to discuss the issue further and review your data. I will also discuss the issue with Police Chief Bordeleau and Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Isra Levy, to get the benefit of their thinking on this topic."

Ward 14 Somerset

  • Martin Canning - "There is a body of evidence that shows these facilities as an effective gateway to treatment and that crime is reduced when these kinds of facilities are opened. While treatment programs are critical, supervised consumption facilities are an effective part of a comprehensive approach to addressing drug addiction. I will communicate this with residents if elected."
  • Catherine McKenney - "We have a very different drug user population, it's not geographically concentrated… we do need a 'Made in Ottawa' solution and it will likely be more than one site. You cannot have the same solution that you have in other cities."
  • Thoman McVeigh - "To be clear, not only would I vote in favour of opening a supervised injection site, I will actively work to establish one, including the work of sitting down with the neighbours of potential sites and addressing their concerns. Harm reduction matters to me."
  • Conor Meade - "I am in favour of a SIS for Ottawa."
  • Jeff Morrison - "I haven't just supported safe injection sites; as past President of Centretown Community Health Centre, I worked closely with the Somerset West and Sandy Hill Community Health Centres to look at the feasibility of bringing a SIS to Ottawa. I've been clear in my support for SISs in the media, in private meetings with Diane Holmes and the Mayor, when I attended and spoke at the Drug Overdose Rally in August 2014, and when I spoke at a meeting on Safe Consumption Sites at Carleton University this past spring."
  • Silviu Riley - "People that would benefit from the safe injection site would benefit not only because they would be provided clean utensils that would stop the spread of disease in Ottawa, but also because they would get access to additional services."
  • Denis Schryburt - "Harm reduction programs are crucial for Ottawa. However I am not convinced that the model used in Vancouver is what we need here in Ottawa. We need a model that will work for us here in the Capital. As city councillor in Somerset Ward I would most certainly work with a number of groups such as yours to plan out exactly what that model should look like."
  • Curtis Tom - "I would support a SIS establishment in Ottawa initially as a pilot project. This is to gain a better understanding if it improves safety and health in our community. I would definitely encourage treatment programs to help individuals with addictions and education programs for children about the negative effects of drug use."
  • Lili Weemen - "I support safe injection sites in a cafe set up attached to the Centretown Community Health Centre."

Opposed to SCS: Edward Conway

Ward 15 Kitchissipi

  • Katherine Hobbs - "I lived in Vancouver for three years and felt the safe injection sites worked well for everyone. Those who used them were safer. It eliminated many of the street issues. There seems to be a lot of opposition in Ottawa to this idea from the police force to many politicians. It would be logical however to my mind to simply add them into health centres where an injection site is most needed. The provincial government could mandate this in its health centres."
  • Jeff Leiper - "I believe safe injection sites are an important way to mitigate the health, social and economic harms sometimes associated with addiction. I'm not opposed to one or more here in Ottawa. What I don't know yet - and won't until there's a full discussion with everyone at the table - is what I'd support by way of implementation. What I can promise is that I'm looking forward to that discussion, and will approach it with patience and transparency."
  • Michelle Reimer - "I support safe injection sites. I am aware of the science supporting this initiative & I know it works. Vancouver is a great example. Happy to champion and help in any way I can. What the public needs is education on the real benefits and consultation on their concerns. If done effectively, I hope to see Ottawa move towards this model of care soon."

Ward 16 River

  • Riley Brockington - "Yes, one regulated location downtown. The sites prove to reduce the spread of disease, reduce death and reduce the discarding of needles in public."
  • Barbara Carroll - "I work with vulnerable populations every day in River Ward and support harm reduction strategies that can and do move people forward. As Councillor, I would be working closely with the Coalition of Resource Centres to help educate and inform around these issues."
  • Vanessa Sutton - "From a community health perspective, I would support a proposal to open supervised injection sites in our city."

Opposed to SCS: Mike Patton

Ward 17 Capital

  • Scott Blurton - "As Councillor, I will be fully supportive of supervised safe-injections sites in Ottawa. I believe that supervised safe-injection sites are essential to improving community health and helping the vulnerable get access to the assistance they need."
  • David Chernushenko - "I support Ottawa having a serious debate about if and how to implement such harm reduction initiatives as a supervised injection site. I have participated in several discussions/conference on this topic. This confirmed my existing conclusion that the evidence shows harm reduction works and is both cost-efficient and the most humane approach."
  • Espoir Manirambona - "I support supervised injection sites in the city."

Ward 18 Alta Vista

  • Jeff Dubois - "The emperical data I've read seems to suggest that the overall costs to the community are less when measured against the costs of various harms reduction programmes. As a consequence, and on recommendations from the Regional Health Unit, I would endorse a move towards safe injection sites in Ottawa."

Ward 19 Cumberland

Opposed to SCS: Stephen Blais

Ward 20 Osgoode

  • George Wright - "I publically stated at an all candidate meeting that I support evidence over ideology."

Opposed to SCS: Mark Scharfe, Allen Scantland, Kim Sheldrick

Ward 21 Rideau-Goulbourn

Opposed to SCS: Scott Moffatt

Ward 22 Gloucester-South Nepean

Opposed to SCS: Scott Hodge

Ward 23 Kanata South

Opposed to SCS: David Abuwa


Look up your ward:

For more information on their positions, try contacting your local candidates directly.