Safer Crack Kits

I learn the most fascinating things every day. Witness these two of late:
Safer Crack
Recently, I
visited a homeless drop-in I support and was given a hands-on lesson on how to assemble a
‘safer’ crack kit. Note, the key word is ‘safer’ as there is no such thing as
‘safe’ crack. Toronto Public Health is supplying drop-ins with these as
a harm reduction strategy to reduce the incidence of disease transmission within
the homeless and under-housed communities.

There is a whole
sub-culture, complete with customs, when it comes to the crack community. The
sharing of crack pipes (alla “peace pipes” of days of lore) is common. Quite
often, crack heads use empty pill bottles to smoke up, which invariably melt
tossing a poisonous mixture of plastic fumes into their systems. Hepatitis C is
rampant within the community, which is also – sadly – closely aligned with the
sex trade industry.


Your standard-issue safer crack kit comes complete with
screens; a glass crack pipe; condoms (lollipop favoured even); a chopstick for tamping
down the screens; alcohol wipes; vaseline (for your lips); and some rather
direct-language reading material and instructions targeted to sex trade workers
(which I could never post here).

Pandemic Influenza Planning
Today I attended an interesting workshop run by Toronto
Public Health
on a reality that will eventually consume all our lives … the
next great pandemic. Currently, the World Health Organization (WHO) has the
world sitting at a Level 3 pandemic phase (where a 1=low risk of human cases;
6=efficient and sustained human-to-human transmission [i.e., very, very bad]).
TPH has run some statistical models forecasting the pandemic’s impact on Toronto
based on a 35% attack rate.
914,000 clinically ill
701,000 require outpatient
14,000 require
4,300 deaths
I hope you and your organization are planning for this
NOW as when it hits, it’ll be too late. You can get details on the Toronto
Pandemic Influenza Plan here.

Tuesday’s lunch: Capocaccia
Met up with my gaggle of girlfriends for an afternoon
of lunch and gossip at Capocaccia (on Yonge, south of St. Clair). Lunch was
great – authentic italian with juicy gossip. 


The New Kid on the Block; The Calgarian; Lady Sarah; TV Star Bree;
Linda; Tatjana and moi

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8 Responses to Safer Crack Kits

  1. Anonymous says:

    Yeah, I heard about the pandemic of influenza. It scares me. I just hope we have enough vaccins and treatments for everyone..

  2. willariah says:

    yes. there is no excuse not to get ur shots, esp. when they are free (well, at my place of employment at least!) … thanks for the wonderful dinner recommendation tonight. enjoyed hanging with you, g and brenda thoroughly:) p.s. describe “direct language”.

  3. maybe you could gimme a safe pot kit?

  4. whoa 914,000 clinically ill701,000 require outpatient care14,000 require hospitalization4,300 deaths…how long of a course was that?!like…a month?!two days?!o_O those are really large numbers nonetheless

  5. Fatcat723 says:

    Thanks for the lesson on how to assemble the kid!!!
    RYC: YoYoMa Rules.

  6. mattfifer says:

    Funny you mention the influenze pandemic…the last time I was at my doctor’s office, I picked up a pamphlet published by the Ontario govt on how important it is to prepare for a possible pandemic of influenza. I just hope the Tamiflu works… :O

  7. YNOTswim says:

    what happened to the pictures of the food? :)

  8. m3galomaniac says:

    safer crack kit? hmmm…sounds like healthier cigarettes…

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