City continues to work toward solutions after death at Camp Marjorie
As Camp Marjorie mourns the death of one of its residents, Regina’s city services are still working to find permanent solutions for those experiencing homelessness.
On Tuesday morning around 10 a.m. during wellness checks by volunteers, one of the residents was found in medical distress. Camp volunteers told CTV News that life-saving measures like CPR were unsuccessful.
“Residents as well as volunteers are visibly shaken,” Shylo Stevenson, communications officer for Regina Needle Recovery and Community Support said. “We have activated a critical incident stress management debrief right away to make sure our volunteers' mental health as well as our residents are looked after.”
Volunteers believe the resident died of a suspected overdose.
“This is the importance of utilizing the drug testing kits at the Friendship Centre and the importance of not using alone, so we’re not experiencing situations like this,” Stevenson said.
The Regina Police Service (RPS), Social Services, Regina Fire and EMS were all on the scene. Stevenson said the investigation into the death of the resident has been turned over to the police and the Coroner.
Officers say they conduct several safety checks daily at Camp Marjorie and continue to work with city services like Regina fire and emergency services to find solutions for those experiencing homelessness and substance use disorders.
RPS says the first step towards success is bringing struggling community members in from the cold.
“That would allow us to do some assessments because it’s very personal for the people there, they all have different needs,” Chief Evan Bray of the Regina Police Service said. “If we understand what needs they have we can understand what services ad supports we need to connect them to for long-term success."
Regina Mayor Sandra Masters expressed her sadness over the loss of life. She said Camp Marjorie has identified a disconnect in the city between those experiencing homelessness and affordable housing supports.
“The city is looking at ways we can collaborate with the government in terms of finding people housing,” she said.
SOCIAL MEDIA ALERTS
Regina Needle Recovery and Community Support took to social media over the weekend to warn the community of a batch of fentanyl that it said had been the cause of overdoses recently.
Camp Marjorie has issued similar warnings, like a Tweet last week saying there had been five overdoses in Regina within a day.