Purpose & Philosophy

Practitioners at the Pier Health Resource Centre believe that we offer a supporting service to DTES residents in their efforts to live a quality life. We see ourselves as a supporting mechanism for other health and social practitioners in the area who have been doing incredible work for decades and who have not been appropriately supported by the profession of pharmacy, throughout that time.

We stand in solidarity alongside residents and support workers against the numerous challenges faced by inner city people today and for generations past.

We realize our position as outsiders and respect the wishes of those who live and have lived in this community their entire lives. We believe the residents of the community understand their own needs more than any outside individual does and so we do our best to facilitate a patient-led practice of healthcare and pharmacy.

We believe in meeting people where they are. While medicine and healthcare has traditionally been a “top-down” approach, we, at Pier, strive to withhold all judgements about how individuals “should” act and avoid the traditional power dynamic in health. We aim to accept the situation of anyone who chooses to work with us and we will support them in whatever goals they choose.

We believe in the “housing first” model of care described in the AT HOME/CHEZ SOI study and in other literature. We subscribe to an evidence-based approach to care and support numerous University and research initiatives in an effort to advance the techniques and strategies by which we support inner city people.

We believe that the DTES is changing and that at-risk residents require advocacy and support throughout this process.

We believe that the current model of healthcare in Canada is unsustainable and that evolution needs to occur. We believe the profession of pharmacy has opportunity to take a leadership role in achieving sustainability in healthcare delivery both amongst vulnerable populations and across our entire society.