Ni tsun hwule'lum'ut ch'   I take notice of you (I care)
Opioid Response

Download Guidelines for Safer Drug Use During COVID-19, and please share


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Welcome to the Cowichan Tribes Opioid Response webpage

Important Information About Drug Use & Opioids

It is very important that all Cowichan Tribes Members are aware of this important information.

We ask all members to please have Narcan (naloxone) in your household, especially if you live with others or have kids. In many overdose deaths, the family and friends of people who died did not know they were using drugs. 

Please share and discuss the information below with your family, friends, children, brothers and sisters, and neighbours. 

  1. Don't use drugs alone. Most overdose deaths happen when people use drugs alone. Use with a buddy who can call for help if you overdose. When you use with a buddy, stagger using times so someone is awake to call for help. During COVID, keep safe distance (6ft), stay outdoors, wear masks, don't share supplies.
  2. Toxic & deadly drug supply.The current supply of illegal drugs is toxic, unpredictable, and deadly, including for smoking. The risk of overdose and death is very high.
  3. If there is an overdose, call 9-1-1 immediately., give breaths, and give Naloxone. If you call 9-1-1 to report an overdose, you won’t be charged for simple drug possession.
  4. Start with a low dose, go slow. Test a small amount of the drugs first, then go slowly. 
  5. Carry Naloxone and have an overdose plan. Be prepared if an overdose happens. Carry Naloxone at all times and know how to use it. Naloxone nasal spray is free at London Drugs and other pharmacies with a Status Card and BC Services Card. 
  6. Use at the Overdose Prevention Site. at 221 Trunk Rd. Entrance is through side door off Ypres Street. Open everyday from noon to 8:00pm. It’s a safe space with no judgement. Services are confidential and you don’t have to give your name. 250-597-7779.
  7. Get your drugs tested at the OPS.Testing drugs takes 5 minutes. No questions asked.
  8. Use the Lifeguard App. If you use alone, the Lifeguard phone app can save your life by calling 911 if you overdose. It’s free at the App Store or Google Play.
  9. Safe supply is available. The doctor at the OPS can give safe supply of opioids. The nurse practitioner at the Primary Care Network Clinic at 71 Government St. can also prescribe safe supply of opioids (250-669-6542). Or call your doctor, Ts’ewulhtun Health Centre (250-746-6184) or Healthlink BC (8-1-1).

  10. Help and support are available. If you are struggling with addiction, sadness, or mental health challenges, we can help you with counseling, addiction treatment referrals, and other supports. Call us today.  Ts’ewulhtun Health Centre & Kwun’atsustul Counselling: 250-746-6184. Read more on our where to get help page.

Download the How to Respond to an Overdose Poster, and please share on your social media:
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News & Upcoming Events

The nurse practitioner at the Primary Care Network Clinic (71 Government St.) specializes in treating opioid addiction and can prescribe safe supply of opioids. 250-669-6542

The doctor at the Overdose Prevention Site (221 Trunk Rd.) can prescribe safe supply of opioids. More info

About the Working Group

Cowichan Tribes' Opioid Crisis Response Working Group was mandated by Chief Seymour and Council. It is a cross-departmental, standing working group of Cowichan Tribes staff.

Our Vision: A strong, safe, healthy Nation, free from addiction and overdoses, where members get the services and supports they need, delivered by Cowichan Tribes and firmly grounded in Quw’utsun culture.

Our Purpose: Lead and coordinate Cowichan Tribes’ ongoing response to the crisis of addiction and overdoses.

Our work includes service delivrey, cross-departmental collaboration and coordination, communications, and advocacy. We are also undrtaking a Community Needs Assessment and developing a final report with recommendations for durable solutions to the crisis of additions and overdoses.

Our service delivery work includes: overdose prevention and harm reduction; direct outreach and support for at-risk members and youth; detox referrals; addiction treatment and recovery support; counselling, mental health, and cultural support; and, data collection and monitoring to inform situation reports & updates.

We meet regulary with Cowichan Tribes partners from Island Health, FNHA, and RCMP to collaborate and improve service delivery.

Working Group Members:

  • Erin Kapela (Co-Lead), Acting Manager Kwun’atsustul Counselling
  • Jen Charlie (Co-Lead), Membership Administrator
  • Toni Williams, Youth Centre Program Manager
  • Michelle Louie, Embracing Life/Prevention Office Manager
  • Stella Nilsson (RN), Harm Reduction Team Lead, Ts’ewulhtun Health Centre
  • Edward Joe, Harm Reduction Team, Ts’ewulhtun Health Centre

Contact Working Group Co-lead Jen Charlie at:
opioid task

Tl'i' to' mukw' mustimuhw   Each person is important