In the News
January 13, 2023
Last year, a state panel tasked with determining how to spend over $2 billion in settlement funds from drug companies that had a role in the addiction crisis recommended that some of that money should fund the supervised injection sites. But the governor’s administration rejected that proposal. State Office of Addiction Services and Support Commissioner Chinazo Cunningham wrote in a letter that supervised injection “violates State and Federal Laws, rules, and/or regulations,” and that the centers are operating illegally. That determination left advocates disheartened. “We all know these are illegal at the federal level – so is cannabis by the way,” Jasmine Budnella, director of drug policy at VOCAL-NY, told City & State. “And so were syringe services programs when they launched in 1992 here in the state.” Syringe services programs provide free, sterile syringes to drug users to combat the spread of AIDS and other blood-borne diseases.