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TIMES UNION: Cautious policies for opioid crisis miss the mark, advocates say:

January 17, 2023

Jasmine Budnella, the director of policy for VOCAL-NY, a drug-user advocacy group, applauded the investment in drug-checking technology and pointed to its pilot use at New York City’s two safe injection sites, also referred to as overdose prevention centers, where staff have been utilizing drug-checking technology to screen users’ samples. 

Advocates are still disappointed in Hochul’s refusal to sanction overdose prevention centers, Budnella said, as well as her focus on law enforcement and the criminalization of drug trafficking. 

“The more we criminalize drugs, the more toxic they get,” Budnella said. 

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