Senator Wiener’s Statement on Reintroduction of Safe Injection Site Legislation
San Francisco—Today, Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) made the following statement upon the reintroduction of legislation, authored by Assemblymember Susan Talamantes Eggman (D-Stockton) and co-authored by Senator Wiener, to authorize a safe injection site pilot program in San Francisco:
“I am proud to join Assemblymember Eggman to push for this important legislation, which will save lives and help with our addiction crisis,” said Senator Wiener. “Public drug injection reflects a failure in our healthcare system, and we have an obligation to try new approaches to help people get healthy. We also must improve the safety and livability of our neighborhoods by reducing public drug injection and syringe litter. California’s addiction epidemic calls for forward-looking, progressive health-based (not criminal) solutions. Safe injection sites are a proven method of reducing overdose deaths and getting individuals into recovery programs.
“The status quo isn’t working. People are injecting drugs whether or not we intervene. They’re injecting on our sidewalks and parks, in transit stations and alleyways, and on people’s front steps. Safe injection sites provide people with an opportunity to inject in a clean, safe, healthy environment, with healthcare professionals available to prevent overdoses, and an opportunity to offer people addiction, healthcare, housing, and other services. Safe injection sites have succeeded everywhere they’ve been tried - reducing overdose deaths, infections, and crime, while successfully transitioning a majority of participants into recovery programs. San Francisco has a long history of pushing the envelope on progressive public health solutions, including medical cannabis and needle exchange, before either was legal or broadly embraced. With AB 362 San Francisco, once again, can lead the way on progressive change for our community and for all of California.”