Denver City Council Approves Needle Exchange... but state must act first to change law 12/12/97

Drug War Chronicle, recent top items


recent blog posts "In the Trenches" activist feed


In an 8-3 vote this week, the city council of Denver, Colorado endorsed, in theory, the implementation of needle exchange programs to thwart the spread of AIDS in their city. The caveat is the key here, as the measure requires that the state of Colorado change their paraphernalia laws to allow such programs before Denver moves ahead. Boulder Colorado has had needle exchange since 1989, in defiance of state law, with the tacit approval of city officials.

Paul Simons, Executive Director of PEERS, spoke with The Week Online concerning the situation: "Colorado is essentially a state with multiple personality disorder. There are a couple of cities, but the rest of the state is essentially frontier. The vote in Denver was important because rural legislators outnumber urban legislators here, and this sends a message to them that this is an important issue for the cities."

We next asked Mr. Simons about the prospects for a positive response by the state. "We think that the chances are good. Last year, we lost on the floor of the House by one vote. This year, for the first time, we have the strong support of the state health department. We are also fortunate in that the bill is being sponsored by one of the most powerful Republicans in the State Senate, Dottie Wham of Denver. Senator Wham is very strong on health issues, and she may be the only legislator who is really capable of shepherding this through. It's vital that we are successful this year, though, because it looks like the next Governor will be a Republican, and political pressure might make it difficult for that person to sign any bill that comes through."

NOTE: It is estimated that there are between ten and fifteen thousand IV drug users in Denver, of which approximately 6% are HIV positive. Therefore, literally thousands of lives may be saved if the state will simply stand aside and allow these programs to be established.

Anyone who would like to lend support to the effort in Colorado can contact Greg Daurer of PEERS at (303) 455-2472.

-- END --
Link to Drug War Facts
Please make a generous donation to support Drug War Chronicle in 2007!          

PERMISSION to reprint or redistribute any or all of the contents of Drug War Chronicle (formerly The Week Online with DRCNet is hereby granted. We ask that any use of these materials include proper credit and, where appropriate, a link to one or more of our web sites. If your publication customarily pays for publication, DRCNet requests checks payable to the organization. If your publication does not pay for materials, you are free to use the materials gratis. In all cases, we request notification for our records, including physical copies where material has appeared in print. Contact: the Drug Reform Coordination Network, P.O. Box 18402, Washington, DC 20036, (202) 293-8340 (voice), (202) 293-8344 (fax), e-mail [email protected]. Thank you.

Articles of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of the DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.

Issue #22, 12/12/97 Point and Click for Drug Policy Reform: Innovative web site lets you raise money for DRCNet | The Week Online Welcomes Tim Devlin: Veteran Canadian journalist and broadcaster adds his voice to the international beat | Canadian Court Declares Medical Marijuana Prohibition Unconstitutional | President's Advisory Council on AIDS Issues Tough Report: Sets Deadline for Lifting Ban on Needle Exchange Funding | American Medical Association: "Let Doctors, Patients Discuss Medical Marijuana" | Denver City Council Approves Needle Exchange... but state must act first to change law | George Soros Signs on to Indepent on Sunday's Cannabis Campaign... On the eve of an historic conference on the issue | Key West Medical Marijuana Club Founder Freed | Poll: Americans consider drug abuse "greatest threat facing kids | 022/france French Minister of Health Calls Medical Marijuana Legalization Obvious""" | Australian Mayors: Enforcement "Will Not Work:" A call to the national government to change strategy | Columbian President Press Secretary and a Reporter Kidnapped by Cartels: American Prohibition continues to undermine order | Link of the Week: Cast your vote and state your case in National Review's on-line medical marijuana survey | Editorial: The drums of reform are getting louder
Mail this article to a friend
Send us feedback on this article
This issue -- main page
This issue -- single-file printer version
Drug War Chronicle -- main page
Chronicle archives
Subscribe now!
Out from the Shadows HEA Drug Provision Drug War Chronicle Perry Fund DRCNet en EspaŮol Speakeasy Blogs About Us Home
Why Legalization? NJ Racial Profiling Archive Subscribe Donate DRCNet em PortuguÍs Latest News Drug Library Search
special friends links: SSDP - Flex Your Rights - IAL - Drug War Facts the Drug Reform Coordination Network (DRCNet)
1623 Connecticut Ave., NW, 3rd Floor, Washington DC 20009 Phone (202) 293-8340 Fax (202) 293-8344 [email protected]