Massachusetts lawmakers set to discuss safe injection sites Monday – Boston 25 News


BOSTON – Massachusetts lawmakers will spend all day Monday discussing several proposals that would legalize safe injection sites in the Commonwealth.

Supervised injection sites, also called supervised consumption sites, are places where people could use illegal drugs under medical supervision.

Similar bills have been the subject of political setback in the past, but advocates for supervised spaces believe the sites are long overdue.

One of the bills would create a 10-year pilot program “establishing at least two supervised consumption sites that use harm reduction tools, including clinical monitoring of the use of pre-obtained controlled substances in the presence of staff. trained, with the aim of reducing the risk of disease transmission and preventing overdose deaths.

The site should provide sterile injection equipment, collect used hypodermic needles and syringes, and provide safe disposal services for hypodermic needles and syringes, as well as referrals to drug treatment and risk education. HIV and viral hepatitis.

“We hope we can get things done and give people struggling with substance use disorders a chance to save their lives and reclaim their place in the community,” said Jim Stewart of SIFMA Now.

The town of Somerville has already volunteered to open the state’s first supervised injection site.

Governor Baker has already expressed his opposition to the legalization of supervised consumption sites.

“Why continue to help them with their habit?” “Asks Kevin McCarthy, opposed to the idea. “You would rather give them help than give them a place.”

In July, Rhode Island Governor Daniel McKee passed a bill to allow supervised consumption sites to open, making Rhode Island the first to adopt such a statewide measure to combat the opioid crisis.

“Everything that is happening now is not working,” said James Lund, who lost a friend to an overdose last month. “I know of at least two lives that would have been saved recently.”

Lund told Boston 25 News he believes supervised consumption sites are long overdue in Massachusetts, where the opioid crisis continues to escalate.

He always carries a backpack full of Narcan with him.

“I saved a friend’s life with Narcan. I had to give him mouth to mouth. It took three to bring him back, ”Lund said.

The virtual hearing of the Joint Committee on Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday. From 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., the hearing will focus on the two decriminalization invoices and from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the three invoices from the supervised consumption sites.

Source link