A member of Portland’s Overdose Prevention Task Force wants the city to establish a safe injection site, where people who use drugs can get clean equipment and be monitored by medical staff.
Jesse Harvey, who runs two recovery houses in Sanford, says at the very least it would prevent overdose deaths.
“But ideally, it’ll provide much more than that, and what a lot of studies are showing is it reduces crime, dropped needles in the neighborhood,” he says. “It also increases the likelihood that people will enter recovery, that they will decide to go into treatment.”
Harvey asked the task force in a meeting Monday to make a formal recommendation to the city council. Members expressed support for the idea, as well as concerns about whether there are enough resources to provide treatment.
No formal action was taken, but city spokeswoman Jessica Grondin says the health and human services committee is expected to discuss the idea.