Needle exchange programs began springing up in the 1980’s during the AIDS crisis. Countless lives have been saved by providing IV drug users with clean needles. But even now, with hundreds of programs across the US and throughout the world, some states still view distributing needles as illegal.
This week, WABE reporter Jim Burress takes us to ‘The Bluff’, a neighborhood in Atlanta where a needle exchange program–breaking the law every day– has become a vital part of a struggling community.
Ruth Kanatser, Denver Harm Reduction Center syringe access director; Lisa
Rayvell, Denver Harm Reduction Center director; Darlene, Beverly, Claude, Atlanta Harm Reduction Coalition clients; Mona Bennett, Atlanta Harm Reduction Coalition program manager; Verna Gaines, Atlanta Harm Reduction Coalition Outreach Coordinator; Marshall Rancifer, Atlanta Harm Reduction Coalition staffer, Rick Mason, Atlanta Police Lieutenant; Renee Unterman, Georgia State Senator.