Syringe Access

Increasing sterile syringe access through syringe exchange programs and non-prescription pharmacy sales is essential to reducing syringe sharing among injection drug users and decreasing rates of HIV/AIDS and hepatitis C transmission. Syringe exchange programs have also been shown to increase the safe disposal of used syringes, protecting police officers and the public from accidental exposure to blood-borne diseases.
 
Despite the benefits of these life-saving programs, legal and bureaucratic barriers still prevent injection drug users from accessing clean syringes. The Drug Policy Alliance has led efforts to increase syringe access in several states and is playing a key role in repealing the federal syringe funding ban. We continue to push for reforms that would greatly reduce rates of disease transmission, overdose and other risks associated with injection drug use.
 

Congress Adopts Significant Drug Policy Reforms in New Spending Bill

Bill Stops Feds from Blocking Medical Marijuana Legalization and Partially Lifts Federal Ban on Funding for Syringe Access Programs to Prevent HIV/AIDS

President Obama Expected to Sign Bill

Congress passed a must-pass spending bill this morning that includes language that stops the Obama Administration’s Department of Justice from spending money to block the implementation of state medical marijuana laws. The amendment was passed last year on a temporary basis and must be renewed this year.

Contact:

Bill Piper (202) 669-6430
Michael Collins (404) 539-6437

Congress Set to Pass Significant Drug Policy Reforms in New Spending Bill

Bill Would Stop Feds from Blocking Medical Marijuana Legalization and Would Partially Lift Federal Ban on Funding for Syringe Access Programs to Prevent HIV/AIDS

President Obama Expected to Sign Bill

Congress is set to vote on a must-pass spending bill introduced last night that includes language that stops the Obama Administration’s Department of Justice from spending money to block the implementation of state medical marijuana laws. The amendment was passed last year on a temporary basis and must be renewed this year.

Contact:

Bill Piper (202) 669-6430
Michael Collins (404) 539-6437

Harm Reduction and Human Rights: Strategies on Expanding Harm Reduction Through Human Rights

May 20, 2015

Watch the recording now!

Harm reduction services and syringe exchange are more than just a prevention strategy. Access to these vital services enables HIV testing, linkage to care and other critical health/social services, as well as affirming the human rights and dignity of people who use drugs.

Indiana Legislature Legalizes Syringe Programs to Counter Growing HIV/AIDS Epidemic; Governor Pence Expected to Approve

Reform Comes in Wake of Kentucky Also Legalizing Syringe Programs

Advocates Call on Congress to Repeal Federal Funding Ban so States Have Resources They Need

Last night the Indiana legislature passed life-saving legislation allowing counties to establish syringe programs to reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis C, and other infectious diseases. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently determined that HIV infection rates have soared in Indiana on account of the sharing of syringes used for the injection of heroin and other drugs. The new law comes in the wake of Kentucky also legalizing syringe exchange programs.

Contact:

Tony Newman 646-335-5384
Bill Piper 202-669-6430

HIV/AIDS Crisis in Indiana Worsens; State's Weak Response Threatens Families Across Midwest

Advocates Call on Indiana Governor Pence and Legislature to Expand Syringe Exchange

Federal Funding Ban on Syringe Services Continues to Hamper Local Efforts to Address Heroin Use and Reduce HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C

In recent months HIV/AIDS infection rates have skyrocketed in rural Indiana, in large part because of the sharing of syringes used for the injection of the prescription painkiller Opana, heroin, and other drugs. In response Indiana Republican Governor Mike Pence allowed one county to implement a 30-day syringe exchange program to reduce infection rates.

Contact:

Tony Newman 646-335-5384
Bill Piper 202-669-6430

Indiana's Republican Governor, Mike Pence, Expresses Support for Syringe Service Programs to Combat Spread of HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C

Announcement Comes as Kentucky’s Republican Governor Signs Bill Approving Syringe Service Programs

Federal Funding Ban on Syringe Services Continues to Hamper Local Efforts to Address Heroin Use and Reduce HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C

Indiana’s Republican Governor, Mike Pence, said on Wednesday he would consider implementing a syringe service program to help combat escalating HIV infection rates in Scott County, Indiana. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently determined that HIV infection rates have soared in Scott County on account of the sharing of syringes used for the injection of heroin and other drugs. Governor Pence expressed support for syringe service programs as part of a heroin emergency plan that he is expected to announce today.

Contact:

Tommy McDonald (510-338-8827)
Bill Piper (202-669-6430)

Taking Control: Pathways to Drug Policies That Work

September 8, 2014
Global Commission on Drug Policy

This report reflects a new evolution in the thinking of the Global Commission, which includes Kofi Annan, Richard Branson, and the former presidents of Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Poland, Portugal and Switzerland. They not only reiterate their demands for decriminalization, alternatives to incarceration, and greater emphasis on public health approaches – but now also call for responsible legal regulation of currently-illegal drugs.

California Poised to Lead the Nation in Innovative Overdose Prevention Effort

Strong Bipartisan Support Delivers California’s ‘Pharmacy Naloxone’ Bill to Governors Desk

SACRAMENTO, CA — Yesterday, the California legislature passed Assemblymember Richard Bloom’s important drug overdose prevention bill (AB 1535), which would permit pharmacists to furnish the opiate overdose antidote naloxone, pursuant to procedures developed by the Board of Pharmacy and the Medical Board of California. The bill now heads to the Governor’s desk for his signature.

Contact:

Meghan Ralston 323 -681-5224

Over 140 Community, National and International Organizations Call on Congress to Lift Syringe Funding Ban

Syringe Ban Hampering Local Community Efforts to Address Heroin Use and Reduce Diseases Such as HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C

Hundreds of Thousands of Lives and Billions of Dollars Have Been Lost As a Result of Decades-Old Ban

Earlier today, more than 140 local, national and international organizations released a letter calling on Congress to end the archaic federal funding ban on syringe service programs (SSPs). The ban was put in place in 1988, repealed in 2009, and reinstated by Congress in 2011.

Contact:  Tony Newman (646-335-5384) or Michael Collins (404-539-6437)

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