Winnipeg is now seeing visible effects of an opioid crisis, and the city’s most vulnerable population is struggling to survive without desperately needed housing supports, say local advocates.

“I like to call it the survival economy,” said Greg MacPherson, executive director of the West Broadway Community Organization.

“It’s a complicated community, but in the last 18 months we’ve seen the presence of, I guess, behaviour that’s troubling. A lot of that, I think, stems from people using substances and maybe not having the supports around them that they need to do that in a healthy way.”