Has it been a long two years?  Do you miss filling your brains with harm reduction knowledge and goodness?  Well, the wait is almost over!  The bi-annual Provincial Harm Reduction Conference will be this coming June 2-3, 2015 in Edmonton, AB!!

For those of you wondering, what is harm reduction? Harm reduction is a public health approach designed to reduce the individual and community harms associated with risk behavior. Harm reduction is built upon the belief that people participate in risk behaviors. We know this. What harm reduction aims to do is reduce the disease, death, crime and suffering that is associated with those behaviors.

The Alberta Harm Reduction Conference has a history dating back 15 years. It has been attended by local, provincial, national and even global presenters and individuals!  The conference is a joint effort by Alberta’s needle exchange/Harm Reduction programs, including Safeworks, Central Alberta AIDS Network, HIV North, HIV West Yellowhead, HIV Community Link, Lethbridge HIV Connection and Streetworks. The conference moves around the province, and this year, Edmonton is hosting the event.  The conference is being co-hosted by Streetworks and AAWEAR (Alberta Addicts who Educate and Advocate Responsibly), the provincial coalition of people who use drugs.

The conference is a forum for presentations and learning about all things harm reduction including policy, research, service provision and peer models. This conference is for anyone interested in harm reduction.  The attendees are people from all walks of life, and include frontline workers, people (who admit to) using substances, professionals, researchers, policy makers, students and folks who are interested in the issues surrounding substance use and sex work. The presenters represent those involved in research, policy and practice.

This year we are so excited that Kenneth Tupper, Ph.D., Dr. Carl Hart and Donald MacPherson will be joining us as plenary speakers and we can’t wait to see who else!  The call for abstracts for anyone interested in presenting has gone out and anyone wishing to submit an abstract related to policy, practice or research should do so by February 9, 2015!!  The more the better!!

The cost of the two day conference is $300 (early bird), $350 (general price), there are a limited amount of student tickets available for $175 and registration is available on the website.  If you wish to apply for a scholarship, the applications are available on the website and need to be submitted by February 9, 2015.  We hope to see you there!

For more information, registration, abstract submission, scholarship applications and other frequently asked questions visit www.albertaharmreduction.com