Eskasoni Leadership Takes Strong Stand on Drugs
June 20, 2011
In an unprecedented meeting held in Eskasoni, on June 20, 2011, Eskasoni Chief and Council brought together all the essential minds in devising an anti-drug strategy campaign to fight the war on drugs in their community.
In his opening remarks Eskasoni Chief- Leroy Denny said, "Today's Anti-Drug Strategy Session is an important moment in our community's history. What we do here today will impact the lives of our children and generations to come. Many sacrifices must be made but we are not going to sit around and let drugs destroy our community."
Over 40 representatives from various sectors, including Crown lawyers, RCMP officers, provincial and federal representatives, health and addictions professionals, Mi'kmaq organizations, managers and Chief and Council where there for one common goal - help Eskasoni in their battle against drugs.
It was an emotional filled gathering, with many representatives expressing their personal stories and other representative discussing what has worked in their departments.
No specific strategy was settled upon but Eskasoni will be using Canada's National Anti-Drug Strategy as a model but they know they must make it culturally sensitive to Eskasoni.
Canada's National Anti-Drug Strategy includes three phases: prevention, treatment and enforcement.
In closing, Chief Denny said, "It is my hope that today's anti-drug strategy assembly will lead the way as a model for other First Nation communities to use in their battle against drugs."
The next step will be another meeting in July to build on the discussion and recommendations from the first meeting in order to craft an effective anti-drug strategy for the community.