Drug Addiction Information Resource for Saskatoon
Broadway bridge and Saskatoon skyline at night
Original Photograph, Jay Van Doornum
General Information on Saskatoon
Saskatoon is the most populous city in Saskatchewan, with a population of nearly 300,000 people in 2008. It has held this number one spot since the mid-1980s, when its population overtook the provincial capital, Regina. Saskatoon is a relatively young city, with close to 18 percent of its residents under the age of 15 years.
Located in central Saskatchewan along the South Saskatchewan River, it is often referred to as the “Bridge City” with its seven individual river crossings. A group looking to escape the liquor trade in Toronto originally settled the city as a “dry” community for the Prairies during prohibition.
Drug Addiction and Abuse in Saskatoon
Saskatoon currently has the highest rate of new HIV cases in Canada due, largely, to the city’s growing intravenous drug problem, as well as growing poverty and prostitution. Specifically, crystal meth is fast becoming a very concerning problem in the city. Low-income youths are at the highest risk of developing a crystal meth addiction problem. According to Saskatoon Addictions Services, eight percent of youth inpatient clients in Saskatoon, and five percent of adult patients, report crystal meth use.
Furthermore, a study by the Youth Addictions Project Saskatoon found 19 percent of the youths surveyed reported crystal meth use. Among the 12 to 14 year olds, crystal meth was the fourth drug of choice (six percent reporting use); the sixth drug of choice among 15 to 18 year olds (20 percent reporting use); and the fifth drug of choice among 19 to 24 year olds (48 percent reporting use). Across all three age groups, alcohol was unanimously the first drug of choice.
In response to the growing drug addiction and abuse problem in the province, former Premier Lorne Calvert launched “Project Hope” in 2005. A $10 million project, Project Hope set a three-year plan to prevent and treat substance abuse in the province by providing drug addiction programs and services across Saskatchewan. In Saskatoon, the project promised a 12-bed youth stabilization unit, outreach center, prevention staff and resources, operational funding for a brief detox facility, and methadone services.
Saskatoon Skyline in Winter,
Original Photograph, Thomas
One year into the project, six of the 12 beds were operational, the brief detox service in the city was operational, the outreach center was scheduled for the following year, and methadone services were successfully expanded in Saskatoon.
At Sobriety Home, we keep up-to-date on all the latest drug addiction research so that we can offer the best drug addiction treatment programs possible. New research allows us a better understanding of alcoholism and drug addiction, resulting in better counselling, treatment, aftercare, and, ultimately, a more successful recovery process for you.