Crossroads closure to leave gap

The closure of Kelowna's Crossroads Treatment Centre would leave an unacceptable gap in detox and addiction treatment services in the Okanagan, says the Hospital Employees' Union.

Crossroads announced that it would be phasing out its detox and addiction counseling over the next three to six months despite high demand for these services.

The facility's board of directors cites inadequate funding from the Interior Health Authority for the decision.

That would leave the Okanagan without any comprehensive detox and addiction services programs outside a hospital setting.

HEU says that the resulting gap in services would be unacceptable and is urging the Centre's board and the Interior Health Authority to resolve the underlying funding issues.

"Leaving Okanagan residents without access to these vital health services is simply not an option," says HEU secretary-business manager Bonnie Pearson.

"If the funding issues cannot be resolved with the society, the IHA should be prepared to consider other options to maintain these services up to and including taking over the centre's operations."

HEU represents about 45 workers at Crossroads including LPNs, night attendants dietary staff, housekeepers, clerical workers, and maintenance staff.

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