Protesters gather as Interior Health prepares to pull addiction resource funding

More than 40 people with signs demonstrated their support outside Pathways Addictions Resource Centre on Sunday. (Monique Tamminga Western News)More than 40 people with signs demonstrated their support outside Pathways Addictions Resource Centre on Sunday. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
This Penticton man came out Sunday because as his sign says ‘Pathways saved my life.’ He’s hoping next Sunday they have enough people to line the sidewalk all the way to Interior Health. (Monique Tamminga Western News)This Penticton man came out Sunday because as his sign says ‘Pathways saved my life.’ He’s hoping next Sunday they have enough people to line the sidewalk all the way to Interior Health. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
More than 40 people rally in support of Pathways outside their Main St. centre on Sunday. (Monique Tamminga)More than 40 people rally in support of Pathways outside their Main St. centre on Sunday. (Monique Tamminga)

‘Pathways Saves Lives’ was the message of more than 40 people who demonstrated outside Pathways Addictions Resource Centre on Main Street on Sunday, as Interior Health prepares to pull the facility’s funding.

“It’s ludicrous. Why take something away that works in the community,” says Lorna, who was outside Pathways collecting signatures for a petition she will present to Penticton MLA Dan Ashton.

“The people that are going to suffer are the addicts who use Pathways — that is, the drug addicts, the alcoholics and the gamblers,” she said. “It’s all about power and politics. What about the people in this town that need these services?”

The demonstration was greeted by countless honks of support.

One demonstrator said the hope next Sunday is to get even more supporters out so they can line Main Street all the way to the Interior Health building.

Interior Health is pulling all of Pathways’ funding to bring addiction services in-house.

Pathways serves around 1,000 people per year and has been in the community for more than 30 years.

Work has already started to transition addiction services in-house and away from Pathways, said Dr. Shallen Letwin, IH vice president of clinical operations.

With nearly 100 per cent of their funding coming from IH, Pathways has started a GoFundMe page to try to remain open. More than $4,000 has been raised through the fundraiser so far, but it remains well short of the $500,000 goal. A Change.org petition now has more than 2,600 signatures from people opposing IH’s decision.

Currently, there are nine counsellors and clinical staff at Pathways.

READ ALSO: Interior Health plans to transition Pathways’ clients to them

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


 

@PentictonNews
newstips@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Memorials have been set up to honour those who died during the Second World War. (Pixabay.com)
COLUMN: It’s time to stop making comparisons to Hitler

The deadliest, most destructive war in human history should not become a metaphor

A medical worker prepares vials of the COVID-19 vaccines, Chinese Sinopharm, left, Sputnik V, center, and Pfizer at a vaccine centre, in the Usce shopping mall in Belgrade, Serbia, Thursday, May 6, 2021. Serbian authorities are looking for incentives for people to boost vaccination that has slowed down in recent weeks amid widespread anti-vaccination and conspiracy theories in the Balkan nation. The government has also promised a payment of around 25 euros to everyone who gets vaccinated by the end of May. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
38 new COVID-19 cases, more than 335k vaccines administered in Interior Health

Interior Health also to start targeted vaccinations in high transmission neighbourhoods

FILE PHOTO
Second doses of COVID-19 vaccine will be available, as AstraZeneca supply runs low: Interior Health

Province expecting large volumes of Pfizer BioNTech as age-based cohort immunization program ramps up

An example of one the sounding boards the RDOS has set up to gather feedback for their first parks, trails and recreation master plan. (RDOS)
Looking for feedback from Princeton and Keremeos for park and rec plan

Sounding boards have been set up in both regions for in-person input

Al Kowalko shows off the province's first electric school bus, running kids to three elementary and two secondary schools on the West Shore. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
Okanagan schools shifting gears to electric buses

Vernon, Central Okanagan, Rocky Mountain and Okanagan-Skaha on board

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

Coronavirus 3D illustration. (CDC photo)
Two South Okanagan businesses closed due to COVID-19

The businesses are listed on the Interior Health website

Police were on the scene of a fatal shooting in Abbotsford. (Black Press Media files)
B.C. government to give more than $8 million for programs to curb gang violence

221 not-for-profit projects led by local governments and school districts among others will receive a one-time grant

Gord Judson steers his log truck down a forest service road, using two-way radio and call signals to mark his position for oncoming traffic. (B.C. Forest Safety Council)
Planning some B.C. wilderness fishing? Don’t catch a log truck

Remote recreation areas bracing for heavy pandemic pressure

Former University of British Columbia student Stephanie Hale, 22. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff Bassett
Human Rights Tribunal to hear complaint against UBC Okanagan for ‘mishandling’ sexual assault report

Stephanie Hale did not return to campus after the student she alleges attacked her was cleared of wrongdoing

Jennifer Coffman, owner of Truffle Pigs in Field, B.C., poses beside her business sign on Thursday, May 6, 2021, in this handout photo. Her restaurant and lodge have been hit hard by a closure of a section of the Trans-Canada Highway and by the British Columbia government discouraging Alberta residents from visiting during the pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Jennifer Coffman, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
‘Why we survive’: B.C. boundary towns struggle without Albertans during pandemic

Jennifer Coffman’s restaurant is located in the tiny community of Field, which relies on tourism

A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. to start releasing neighbourhood-specific COVID numbers after data leak

Documents obtained by the Vancouver Sun show cases broken down by neighbourhoods

Kelowna seen from the top of Knox Mountain. (Phil McLachlan/Black Press Media file)
Accessibility concerns raised as Kelowna ponders banning vehicles from Knox Mountain

Knox Mountain Drive, which leads to two lookouts, has been closed since the COVID-19 pandemic began

(Pixabay photo)
Cow-based wildfire mitigation pilot contended by Southeast Kelowna group

‘Targeted grazing’ program would see 50 cows deployed to 60-hectare parcel above Field Road

Most Read