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Feds Pull Money from Needle Exchanges

Feds Pull Money from Needle Exchanges


Congress this weekend stripped subsidies for safe syringe exchanges, two years after restoring funding for the life-saving program in the wake of the Bush years.

The Republican-controlled House has aggressively tried to pull money from the program since the Democratic Congress began funding such programs in 2009. The House finally succeeded with this year’s omnibus spending bill, which the Senate passed this weekend.

Studies show the needle exchanges cut down on HIV transmission without getting people addicted to drugs.

“The federal syringe funding ban was costly in both human and fiscal terms — it is outrageous that Congress is restoring it given how overwhelming and clear the science is in support of making sterile syringes widely available,” Bill Piper, director of national affairs for the Drug Policy Alliance, told “Make no mistake about it — members of Congress who supported this ban have put the lives of their constituents in jeopardy.”

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