Pubdate: Fri, 01 Jun 2007
Source: Texas Monthly (TX)
Copyright: 2007 Texas Monthly, Inc.
Author: Robert Sharpe
Bookmark: (Needle Exchange)


REGARDING WILLIAM MARTIN'S thoughtful April column "The Damage Done," 
needle exchanges have been proven to reduce the spread of HIV without 
increasing drug use. They also serve as a bridge to drug treatment 
for an especially hard-to-reach population. Drug users are not the 
only beneficiaries. U.S. Centers for Disease Control researchers 
estimated in 2002 that 57 percent of AIDS cases among women and 36 
percent of overall AIDS cases in the U.S. were linked to injection 
drug use or sex with partners who inject drugs. This easily 
preventable public health crisis is a direct result of zero-tolerance 
laws that restrict access to clean syringes. In the interest of 
containing the HIV epidemic, let's hope the Texas Legislature 
acknowledges the drug war's tremendous collateral damage sooner 
rather than later.

Robert Sharpe

Common Sense For Drug Policy

Washington, D.C.
- ---
MAP posted-by: Beth Wehrman