It is a sad day for Kelowna with the planned closure of Crossroads Treatment Centre.
Unfortunately, it is not just Kelowna that will suffer. Many individuals come from out of town to access this specialized treatment.
I understand that cuts need to be made, however, this is one cut that should never happen. Crossroads centre has helped an untold number of people return to their lives and help them remain alcohol- and drug-free.
Without this centre, the Okanagan will no longer have any treatment centre services. Kelowna General Hospital will be expected to take on the burden; and we already know how overcrowded and understaffed our hospital is.
How can this closure happen? Well like everything else, it's all about dollars.
It's not like Crossroads hasn't tried to make it work. However, how can you operate when you are given less money than it costs to run the programs and facilities?
This closure means your loved ones will not have the detox, meeting and housing support services they may need.
And what about the people who are losing their jobs? They have dedicated themselves to helping high-risk individuals who have reached the bottom of their well. They have tirelessly supported those who are struggling with the horrible grips of addiction.
There also will be impacts felt throughout our community to those who provide goods and services to Crossroads.
I feel helpless; that is why I'm writing.
There are many in our community who are in the position to help Crossroads return to full operation. The clock is ticking, though. Only 90 days left before it will be gone forever.
Even if you don't have anyone who needs Crossroads' services now, the chances are someone you care about may need them someday. There are many patients who come out of detox and find their way back to sobriety. Without Crossroads, that may have never happened.
Drug and alcohol addiction is not a pleasant thing to acknowledge. For many, it's just something they wish to ignore, however, it is the reality for all those who are afflicted with this disease and for all who love and care about them.
I ask everyone reading this, please reach into your hearts and discover the satisfaction and pride of keeping the essential Crossroads Treatment Centre open for all of those who have nowhere else to turn.