Feb 17 2016

What It Was Like to Hand Out Clean Needles With Cops Threatening to “Beat Your Ass”

In the late 1980s, Richard Curtis, who was conducting a study of police crackdowns on open-air drug markets, saw first-hand the misery HIV infection inflicted on New Yorkers who used heroin. “I was so overwhelmed by what I saw that I couldn’t walk away from it. I just couldn’t,” Curtis, who is now a...
Feb 16 2016

Rehabs’ Failure to Give Lifesaving Naloxone to Vulnerable Clients Is Unacceptable

Jeff Cullen was a handsome, athletic young man. A great surfer, who loved goofy comedies like Dumb & Dumber and had an affinity for animals. Pretty much the stereotypical California Golden Boy, except for his long, serious problem with heroin. On August 5, 2008, he signed up on a four-week waiti...
Feb 12 2016

I’m Not Sorry That I Keep Falling in Love With Men Who Are Addicted to Heroin

Four months ago, I dropped my boyfriend James* off at rehab—the same rehab I took my first boyfriend to 10 years before. While James filled out paperwork and spoke with counselors, I worried that his insurance would only cover the five-day detox that never worked for him. I worried that he would die...
Feb 10 2016

Does the Lead-Contaminated Water in Flint Pose a Danger to People Who Shoot Up?

In January, President Barack Obama declared a state of emergency in Flint, Michigan over the city’s water supply, which had been contaminated with lead after the water source was switched from Lake Huron to the Flint River. Residents have developed a slew of health problems like hair loss and ...
Feb 08 2016

Watch: This “All-American” Super Bowl Heroin PSA Is an Embarrassment

“Give me an H! Give me an E! Give me an R-O-I-N! What’s that spell? HEROIN!” So began a bizarre Super Bowl Sunday advertisement about heroin that the National Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NCADA) Saint Louis chapter ran for Saint Louis-area viewers. It chronicles the “All-American” girl—a prett...