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Native peoples have made great strides to become equal to other Canadian citizens, but by no means does this mean their plights are no longer important or valid. Too many Native children start drinking at young ages, too many Native girls sell themselves, and too many Native peoples deal with prescription addictions. “In some [native] communities, it’s as high as 75 per cent. Of the thousands who need treatment, she said, less than 10 per cent are getting help.” (Paperny) Oxycotin, the main drug used by the native peoples, has harsh and sometime deadly effects, but due to the dangerous, depressive and aggressive environment that so many reserves deal with, Oxycontin has become the high so many native peoples believe they need. This highly addictive drug though destroys lives further. “On Feb. 6, Matawa First Nations, a tribal council of nine Northern Ontario First Nations, reported that almost 2,000 people have an Opioid addiction in their communities.” (Windspeaker) These 2,000 people need help, and the way in which the government has chosen to deal with this is by cutting Oxycontin from the Ontario health care plan to replace it with OxyNEO. Explaining the history behind this drug addiction and the environment it thrives in, the issues withdrawal will cause and the symptoms of withdrawal, will help people conclude for themselves whether OxyNEO is a positive solution, or we need something else. OxyNEO threatens the health of many Native peoples, but it wouldn’t be an issue if the addiction itself wasn’t such a big problem. But how come Native peoples struggle so much with addiction? Well a large part of the issue is environment, as many natives live on reserves, native communities usually isolated with little job opport... ... middle of paper ... ...Canadians health, and the availability of clinics. It is not the best answer to this question. How can one answer this question? Through resources. Opening clinics, opening detox centers, but through help, not donations. Doris Slipperjack has changed the way her community sees addiction, by looking past the drugs, and to the mentality behind it and the drive to take opiates. "I had to live off my mom, and I would steal too from the store so my kids could eat," she remembers. "But now I'm not spending money on drugs, I buy groceries and things I never really had." (Pressly). Through her detox and time working on establishing a clinic in Fort Hope, Doris was able to overcome her addiction. She is a sign that given the right opportunities, any one can overcome their addiction. She actively works to give her people the same opportunities she has been given.
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