Harm Reduction in Colorado

DPA staff and supporters in Colorado at an event for International Overdose Awareness Day.

Over the past several years, DPA, in coalition with various community partners, has lobbied for the successful passage of evidence-based, public health interventions that lessen barriers to essential social services, reduce drug user stigma, and prevent needless overdose deaths. 

As a result, the state now has a 911 Good Samaritan law, widespread access to the opioid overdose antidote, naloxone, and legal sterile syringe access through registered service providers. These and future health-based approaches will help reduce the harms associated with both drug use and misuse, and repair the detrimental impact of drug policies of our past. 

Our Work

Colorado SCS (Supervised Consumption Services) Campaign

DPA believes that supervised consumption services, also known as safe or supervised injection facilities (SIFs), are urgently needed in Colorado. These are legally sanctioned facilities designed to reduce the health and public order issues often associated with public injection. They are empirically shown to save money while improving public health.

Colorado has made strides in improving harm reduction services like sterile syringe access and naloxone availability, but our communities still experience far too many needless overdose deaths with rates higher than the national average in multiple counties. It is time for Colorado to take the next step in public health-based drug policy by establishing SCS.

Learn more about the Colorado SCS Campaign.

Colorado Coalition to Protect Children and Family Rights

Families throughout the United States experience devastating consequences of misguided drug war policies. In Colorado, through participation in the Colorado Coalition to Protect Children and Family Rights, we advocate for humane policies for families affected by substance use. 

The coalition includes a range of advocacy groups, community organizations and interested individuals who are committed to protecting the health, safety and rights of children and families when substance use is a factor in their lives.

Learn more about the coalition.

We are committed to creating and maintaining productive dialogue surrounding drug use and misuse issues with the goal of shifting current paradigms from a criminal justice to a public health approach. In addition to the campaigns above, we advocate for innovative, evidence-based models in Colorado such as law enforcement assisted diversion (LEAD), medication-assisted treatment including injectable opioid treatment and access to medical marijuana as an alternative to opioids and other more dangerous medications.

 

 

Supervised Consumption Services
Strengthening Families
Harm Reduction