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52. Sharp Points on a Map: Understanding the Impact of Urban Needle Debris Using GIS Mapping

52. Sharp Points on a Map: Understanding the Impact of Urban Needle Debris Using GIS Mapping

52. Sharp Points on a Map: Understanding the Impact of Urban Needle Debris Using GIS Mapping

Alexandra Ewanyshyn, BA Psychology, Minor in Urban Studies; University of Calgary; Canada
Twyla Ens, MN RN CCNE, Senior Instructor; Faculty of Nursing, University of Calgary; Canada
Jennifer Jackson, PhD RN, Assistant Professor; Faculty of Nursing, Univeristy of Calgary; Canada

Learning objectives:
  1. Formulate an understanding of what needle debris is, and how it can be broken down into categories of debris ‘types’.
  2. Presentation Handout

Needle debris has been identified by provincial and municipal governments as a significant risky outcome of street-level substance use. For the purpose of our study, needle debris encompasses discarded syringes alongside other types of paraphernalia that are often (but not exclusively) associated with substance use. While needle debris has been identified as a significant harmful risk for urban communities, there is a lack of policy and research that seeks to address the issue from an interdisciplinary perspective. The current gap in knowledge limits understanding of how to mitigate needle debris while supporting people who use drugs, and is reactive as opposed to preventive in response to needle debris. We aim to understand how needle debris accumulates in urban hotspots from the perspective of a ‘local-knowledge narrative, which encompasses outreach workers and people with lived experiences interactions at the ground level of our community. Collection of needle debris will then be translated into categories of different ‘types of debris in an effort to understand the pattern of use of different substances in the urban built environment. We will be collecting data about needle debris with embedded GIS mapping technology in worn cameras, while also scoping the built environment in which the needles are found. Cameras will be used to record conversations with stakeholders walking alongside the researcher. We will triangulate the data their knowledge provides alongside GPS mapping to inform targeted nursing interventions in urban spaces. While we are currently collecting data, this presentation will allow us to share our findings about how the social and physical environment of a community can impact needle debris. This will result in an understanding of current patterns of substance use within the City of Calgary, and how this translates into recommendations for nurses who work with people who use drugs and other vulnerable populations.


MEETING ID: 858 6520 0828

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