LETTER REBUTTAL: ‘Why I do not support Safe Injection Sites’


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[EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a Letter to the Editor, written by a Reader. It does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The B-Town Blog nor its staff:]

Rebuttal: “Why I do not Support ‘Safe” Injection Sites”:

Dear Editor,

I am writing in response to the Letter to the Editor written by Cydney Moore in support of Safe Injectio Sites posted on Sept 15, 2017. I have reviewed a link that she provided in support of her position and conclude that the evidence is cited incorrectly and in an obviously biased manner.

Cydney writes that “There is strong evidence to support harm reduction models, including – and especially – safe injection sites. In fact, the World Health Organization and the American Medical Association have both come out and endorsed the implementation of safe injection sites in communities struggling with drug addiction.”

Cydney makes it sound as if the AMA is touting SIS’s whole-heartedly as its recommendation for communities with drug problems. But, if you click on the link “endorse” in the 11th paragraph, you find that the AMA was recommending something totally different and that the World Health Organization included in her quote, was not included in the link at all.

If this link is read thoroughly it includes the following information:

  1. The AMA agreed to support a PILOT SIF/SIS begun to explore the feasibility of endorsing the use of SIF/SIS’s in the future, focusing on the legalities, costs, and benefits knowing they could not extrapolate the results of the Canadian and Australian sites to our country. The following statement is a direct quote from the AMA-“Pilot facilities will help inform U.S. policymakers on the feasibility, effectiveness and legal aspects of supervised injection facilities in reducing harms and health care costs associated with injection drug use.”

Also cited within the same link was a comprehensive study of the literature by the Massachusetts Medical Society which also felt that the research from Canada and Australia could not be generalized to the US.

Other findings from the Massachusetts Med. Soc.:

  1. Mixed findings on public nuisances generated by SIS’s and that the opinions from local residents, police and business owners were mixed.
  2. The cost effectiveness needs more research.
  3. From an ethical point of view, the difficulty of obtaining informed consent when evaluating SIS’s was compounded by the fact that subjects were under the influence of a controlled substance.
  4. From a legal point of view, legislation to allow for health care workers being in the presence of heroin, a prerequisite for SIS’s, did not pass in the Massachusetts legislature session of 2015-16, and would need much broader support to become law. Also the legal and liability risk to physicians and health care providers was felt to be too great to pilot a SIS unless such a law was passed, or a federal exemption was obtained. This federal exemption from drug laws would be very unlikely in the absence of convincing scientific evidence of benefit, and in the current political climate.
  5. The process should include review of both the societal and individual benefits of SIF’s.

I also note that although this article stated there was no increase in the number of people using drugs intravenously in the localities where such facilities operated, it was also found that police stopped charging drug users and instead escorted them to the SIS once these were available, creating a mirage of decreased drug charges and use.

Finally, and most importantly (I believe), it is noted repeatedly that the support for a pilot program for SIS’s has only been in the context of “ready access to counseling, referral, rehab, and placement-on-demand for the insured and uninsured. In our present local situation, this is problematic.

In summation, the well-written and superficially well-researched letter by Cydney Moore was in fact a biased misstatement of the source she included. Burien is not the right place for an experimental program with no convincing scientific evidence behind it. This experiment would require an enormous amount of research and clinical supporting facilities not available in our community. Implementing this experiment would put our community at risk.

– Karen Boyden

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Comments

85 Responses to “LETTER REBUTTAL: ‘Why I do not support Safe Injection Sites’”
  1. Tina says:

    People aren’t going to magically stop doing drugs because communities won’t adopt to safe injection sites. They’ll just continue to do drugs at your kids park, the parking lots of local shopping areas and anywhere else in public.

    Ignoring the problem of drug abuse isn’t going to make it go away. We MUST try new ways of dealing with this situation in order to try and fix it.

    Rate: Thumb up 31 Thumb down 59

    • Karen Boyden says:

      Tina,
      I am not advocating ignoring the problem. I think most people living in our community want to see something done to help alleviate the problem of IV drug addiction. The question is, what makes the most sense to implement, and when?

      It seems to me we must “get all our ducks in a row” before we take a wild ride on this train! We first must get the facts straight. Then proceed accordingly.
      Karen

      Well-liked. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 80 Thumb down 4

      • Cydney M. says:

        The facts are clear. You are choosing to ignore them. Data overwhelmingly supports safe injection sites. Your opposition has no legitimate basis in logic. You have no conclusive evidence to support your opposition, and refuse to recognize the research and opinions of those far more qualified than yourself to make such a call. You are burying your head in the sand at the expense of our city’s safety and well-being. You should be ashamed.

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        • steve says:

          Why doesn’t anyone mention the Vancouver BC neighborhood where their SIS is located? Have you watched the news reports? Have you seen the open drug dealing? Where the cops wont discuss the ‘issue’? Real life footage of filth and decay and crime. Again, iSIS’s all sounds good on paper. Lets try it here, but facts and figures can be made to say whatever you need them to. Why do you think the majority of cities in King County are voting to ban SIS’s in their cities? BECAUSE THEY RUIN THE NEIGHBORHOOD!!! Pretty simple…and I don’t want them here.

          Well-liked. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 78 Thumb down 10

          • Cydney M. says:

            The neighborhood where the safe injection site is located in Vancouver was already in a poor state before they opened the safe injection site there. They opened the facility there so as to be easily accessible for addicts in the city. Research is more reliable than the opinion of random people on the internet, so when it comes to whether to trust verifiable data from scientists and medical professionals, or your personal assertions, I feel pretty comfortable suggesting folks turn to those actually qualified to answer questions on the subject. And, research has shown time and time again that safe injection sites do not increase crime, including drug dealing, in the areas they serve.

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        • Jan says:

          You. have. got. to. be. kidding. Next thing you know we’ll be supplying the heroin and meth as well as the comfy place to do it. Most people with common sense know that you don’t enable a drug addict. What if it was your teenage daughter that the City Of Burien was providing her a place to go to shoot up dope? All the while you are trying your best to help her get off of it. I cannot even imagine how a parent would feel about that. It wouldn’t be much different than some drug house you just peeled her out of the night before. If I were a parent or grandparent and my kid died in one of these legal drug houses, I can tell you the City Government that allowed it would not have enough money to defend the lawsuit. What are you going to do, have someone who’s blown out of their mind sign a hold harmless agreement?

          It would be a lot cheaper for the taxpayers I suppose, to rent a run down store front and staff it with a nurse so people can shoot up there rather than spending money on rehabilitation and drug treatment that actually gives someone a chance at a halfway decent life. I highly doubt that most people who are addicted to heroin and meth are liking their lives. Safe injection sites are a ridiculous idea. Call it what it is, a drug house. It’s the easy way out and a pretty chicken sh** thing to do. There needs to be money spent on rehabilitation and drug prevention, including keeping it out of the country. There are better answers. We just need to figure out what they are and then have the guts to fund them. There are a lot of really smart people in this country. Clearly the ones that thought up this idea aren’t them.

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          • Don Honda says:

            Lab grade heroin is already being supplied in Vancouver to users/addicts for free, courtesy of taxpayers in Canada.

            Rate: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 5

            • Karen Boyden says:

              Don Honda-thanks for supplying these links. I’m thinking the folks in charge at Insite realized these graphs may lead people to believe perhaps all the glowing data and “scientific publications” they’ve produced since 2003 don’t support the great success they’ve portrayed of their facility? The first link shows total fatal overdoses since 2006 courtesy of the coroners office. (I guess they can’t fudge a graph like this one.):

              https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d2f8aa542d4033a1f198a3b0e3e802482a4becf1e45b04e77079e989e5c6460a.jpg

              2nd graph shows proportion of OD’s in B.C. linked to fentanyl 2012 to ~1st half 2016:

              https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/4937e3e285c02900541696be294c99859dd986654fc2ea3b3b1f41f673618dc7.png

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              Reply

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              • Karen Boyden says:

                …..and to add to this conundrum- today 9/221/2017 it was on local news that marijuana has now been tested in a lab and found to contain fentanyl. How on earth are we as a community going to deal with this new onslaught of OD’s/ addicts?

                Rate: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

                • Karen Boyden says:

                  Sorry to be such a Debbie-downer, but I find this news devastating to the public health of our beautiful state of Washington. Who on earth is lacing marijuana with Fentanyl, and WHY? Find them and haul them away….

                  Rate: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 1

                  • Captain obvious says:

                    One it was one person’s pot on tribe ground not the pot sold in stores in Washington.

                    Also sites like salon (story from Ohio not Washington) tend to make things up or to sound worse than what they really are.

                    Also it could and most likey was some one in pain and prescribed fentanyl and medical cannabis.

                    For what ever reason found the need to mix the two. Not the smartest thing to do. But if you know your own tolerances and pain levels then mixing these two might work for people in that much pain. But for most people it would send them to a hospital or worse.

                    I had a family member in the past that was prescribed to 6 10/325 Percocets a fentanyl patch another pain patch everyday and had a medical cannabis card also drank about a half gallon of booze a day. This person knew there pain levels and tolerances. Luckily had the insurance to pay for rehab at Riverton after about 12 years of daily use. Keep only the medical cannabis card got rid of all stuff.

                    Now the problem for most people that need help they don’t have the insurance to cover what my family member had. Some are using to just get high some are using to try to stop pain from other medical issue’s.

                    The people against these programs tend not to see the difference. Think it’s all about getting high!

                    Rate: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 6

                    • QA1 says:

                      Captain Obvious~
                      A couple responses to your post:

                      1). The articles I linked are talking about field-testing the pot they confiscated and are in the process of lab testing it to be 100% certain the pot was laced with fentanyl.
                      You are writing about a person ingesting multiple drugs. That’s a totally different topic.

                      2) The Ohio link did turn out to be misleading. The update explains it. Thanks for mentioning your concerns.

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                • Dudley Do-Right says:

                  Some of the heroin pushers will include a “hot shot” laced with fentanyl in every batch they sell to deliberately make someone OD because it makes their surviving customers think they’re selling real good potent stuff.

                  Rate: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

                  • QA1 says:

                    That is downright crazed. Their mind has got to be pretty fried to be thinking like that. Not to mention, I would think that it would be called “murder”?! Now those are the people we need to track and “criminalize”. Because they ARE criminals. No “harm reduction model” non-sense for them.

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  2. Question Authority says:

    Stop having Narcan so available will cure many of their addiction.

    Rate: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 39

    • Question Authority says:

      Why would a junkie want to travel any distance just to shoot up in an sanctioned environment where their addiction becomes subjective to public scrutiny? Needles and dope are so easy to acquire why leave the comfort of your tent to shoot up with a nurse watching you so you can stumble around downtown instead of being high back at your pristine and litter/feces free camp ? Addiction is bad and the road you went down, I refuse to make it easier, and on my dime as well.

      Well-liked. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 64 Thumb down 17

    • Andrew McNair says:

      To be clear, Question Authority is advocating letting people die of overdoses rather than attempting to save their lives with Narcan.

      It’s no wonder they refuse to post under their real name. I’d be ashamed to let people know I’m a monster too.

      Rate: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 57

      • Question Authority says:

        Why yes I did imply that, but here’s the reality of the situation as it would exist. They were going to die anyway by their own choices and nothing was going to prevent it from happening. Now you are just serving as an enabler for them to try, try again until they succeed.

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    • Cydney M. says:

      If by “cure many of their addiction” you mean let them die, then yes, reducing the availability of narcan will cure many of their addiction….

      Some of us are not content to just watch our most vulnerable citizens die of a disease when we know we have within our capability the power to save them…. Addiction is a disease and just as we dont let people die from cancer when we can help it, so should we take action to prevent addiction from killing people if we can help it.

      Rate: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 61

  3. B says:

    Strange that you didn’t link to the studies – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25456324

    “Results: Seventy-five relevant articles were found. All studies converged to find that SISs were efficacious in attracting the most marginalized PWID, promoting safer injection conditions, enhancing access to primary health care, and reducing the overdose frequency. SISs were not found to increase drug injecting, drug trafficking or crime in the surrounding environments. SISs were found to be associated with reduced levels of public drug injections and dropped syringes. Of the articles, 85% originated from Vancouver or Sydney.

    Conclusion: SISs have largely fulfilled their initial objectives without enhancing drug use or drug trafficking. Almost all of the studies found in this review were performed in Canada or Australia, whereas the majority of SISs are located in Europe. The implementation of new SISs in places with high rates of injection drug use and associated harms appears to be supported by evidence.”

    As Tina said, drug users are going to use drugs regardless of SIS; the point is to corral them to a known location where they can be taken into treatment, stop needles going everywhere, etc.

    “This experiment would require an enormous amount of research and clinical supporting facilities not available in our community.”

    We have at least one hospital and multiple medical facilities; short of downtown Seattle I’d say we have the most of anywhere near us.

    “Implementing this experiment would put our community at risk.” How? You didn’t say anything to support this.

    The original letter was multiple pages of scientific results; this letter takes issue with a citation and then makes unsubstantiated claims.

    Rate: Thumb up 30 Thumb down 35

  4. A.J. says:

    Thank you, Karen, for this well written response to a debate that is ongoing… We need to think about the cost/benefit of SIF/SIS’s very carefully. This counter narrative brings home some key points.

    More information is needed before making a decision about the feasibility and use of SIF/SIS’s in our city. As of yet, I would elect to NOT use SIF/SIS’s until more research data and careful interpretation points become available.

    Well-liked. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 56 Thumb down 9

    • Cydney M. says:

      How much research do you need? How much data is required before you can be convinced? Because I dare say there is a sufficient amount available for review. I linked to several studies in my article, and there are a vast amount of additional studies and reports done on the subject out there, with a very clear pattern of conclusions. How many do you need? 20? 40? 100? If I give you links to 100 studies on the subject, would that be sufficient? Do you need 1000? And how many people should suffer while we wait for you acknowledge the data showing us how to help? Tell me the number of studies that you would need to see to be convinced, and I bet I can tell you where to find them.

      Rate: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 68

  5. Lake Burien says:

    Thank you Karen!

    Well-liked. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 50 Thumb down 8

  6. Cydney M. says:

    Karen – I want to start off my response to your letter by pointing our that your statement claiming there is “no convincing scientific evidence behind” safe injection sites certainly falls under the purview of what I would consider “misleading”. What amount of scientific evidence do you require to consider it “convincing”? To whom will you listen? There are decades worth of research and data compiled from around the world, yet you would claim there is “no convincing evidence”? It seems to me you are intentionally ignoring the vast amount of evidence available, just to remain staunchly set in your own personal opinion, which is what we call being “willfully ignorant”. I have provided several links to several studies and reports, and there are many, many more studies out there available for public review. Choosing to ignore the results of these studies, and the data they have compiled, does not make them any less valid.

    Furthermore, I do not appreciate your mischaracterization of my article as “superficially well-researched” or as a “biased misstatement”. I have done a substantial amount of research on this subject; have you? Do you have any resources to cite, besides trying to call into question the ones I have personally provided? Which, by the way, I maintain are perfectly valid.

    For example, you try to minimize the AMA’s support for safe injection sites. They voted specifically to support opening these facilities and enacting these programs, based on the research available, and in hopes that once we establish programs in our own country, we can compile evidence of their effectiveness here. Their statement reads,

    “In an effort to consider promising strategies that could reduce the health and societal problems associated with injection drug use, the AMA today voted to support the development of pilot facilities where people who use intravenous drugs can inject self-provided drugs under medical supervision.

    Studies from other countries have shown that supervised injection facilities reduce the number of overdose deaths, reduce transmission rates of infectious disease, and increase the number of individuals initiating treatment for substance use disorders without increasing drug trafficking or crime in the areas where the facilities are located.

    “State and local governments around the nation are currently involved in exploratory efforts to create supervised injection facilities to help reduce public health and societal impacts of illegal drug use,” said Dr. Harris.“Pilot facilities will help inform U.S . policymakers on the feasibility, effectiveness and legal aspects of supervised injection facilities in reducing harms and health care costs associated with injection drug use.

    The examination of this issue by physicians at the AMA Annual Meeting was greatly assisted by the Massachusetts Medical Society and its recently completed comprehensive study of the literature associated with supervised injection facilities.”

    So once again, I will assert that the American Medical Association has spoken in favor of enacting safe injection site programs in this country, and their conclusion was based, in part, on the research provided by the Massachusetts Medical Society. They reviewed the evidence presented by the MMS and drew their conclusion; your interpretation of the data collected by the MMS may be different than the AMA’s, but I certainly feel more comfortable deferring to the expertise of the AMA on their interpretation of the findings, rather than relying on your personal interpretation, given that they are a respected medical insitution and you are… what, exactly? Do you have any experience in this field to lend credibility to your opinion, or your interpretation of these results? Do you have any professional qualifications that would make your opinion somehow more valid than those at the AMA? Somehow I doubt your personal knowledge is in any way comparable to the combined knowledge and professional experience of the people over at the AMA, who voted to SUPPORT ENACTING SAFE INJECTION SITES. You can pick apart the phrasing or try to debate semantics all you want, but the end result is the same: the AMA voted to support implementing safe injection sites here. That is the cold, hard fact of the matter.

    I would also like to defer to the professional opinion of the Vancouver Police Department in regards to what you suggest might be an increase in drug users in the areas surrounding their safe injection site. Obviously the data on the subject is extensive, though you choose to ignore it, but if you want to ask the police officers who are charged with patrolling the area, who would know more than anybody whether there is an increase of drug use, an increase in public nuisances, an increase in crime or disorderly conduct, they will tell you the same thing supported by the data compiled on the subject: there is no increase in crime, drug use, public nuisances or disorder, etc. ,etc., etc. The Vancouver PD supports their safe injection site, and I imagine they know better than you do the real-world impact of this program in the neighborhoods they serve. If the VPD says there have been marked improvements in that neighborhood, and the research says the same, I hope you will excuse me if I take their word over your own. And, by the way, the WHO has actively supported the facility in Vanouver, as well, which you would know if you bothered to do your own research, rather than complaining that I don’t provide enough links for you.

    You don’t offer any evidence of your own to support your opposition, and you fail to acknowledge the vast amount of data compiled on the subject that indicates you are wrong. There is not much more to be said here, other than I hope the rest of the people in Burien will look past the fear-mongering and base their own opinions on hard evidence, quantifiable data, and the wisdom of some of our most respected medical institutions. Public policy should be formed based on logic, not the panicked and uninformed emotional responses of those ill-equipped to offer opinions on the matter.

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    • murlynd says:

      Wow. Triggered.

      Rate: Thumb up 35 Thumb down 1

    • Karen Boyden says:

      Cydney Moore,

      In responding to your response to my rebuttal letter:
      1) You say “no convincing scientific evidence behind safe injection sites” is misleading.
      Well, if you had understood your link from the AMA and MA Med. Society, you would have understood that they both had issues with the information/studies/results that have been released from both of the main sites (Vancouver & Australia), thus needed to do a PILOT SIF (meaning a facility opened to study the feasibility of opening more). As I mentioned in my rebuttal to your Letter to the Editor, neither of these independent entities in perhaps the most liberal state in the nation, could quite swallow the results they read. Some of this had to do with the differences in the Canadian and Aussie governmental health systems not mirroring our own. Some of it had to do with the manner in which the results of the facilities were measured and reported.

      2) I am sorry you did not appreciate my comments that I felt the opinions in your Letter to the Editor were superficially well-researched and biased. What more can I say. Either you didn’t understand the link you posted, or you were trying to purposefully mislead the community. Which is it?

      You mentioned your resources are perfectly valid. Well, yes, I agree with you on that. At least the one link I read which is the one I wrote my rebuttal about. The source is perfectly valid. Your interpretation of the source is what I have issue with. It seems to me you have completely misinterpreted the basis of the source. The AMA did not endorse opening SIF’s in all drug-addled communities. It endorsed opening one to test and observe. They needed to certify the idea made sense at all since all the “scientific data” you talk about was less than adequate from their standpoint. This is called a PILOT project. Please re-read your link. Thank you.

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      • Cydney M. says:

        The AMA said they endorsed opening pilot facilities. King County is looking to open pilot facilities. Not sure what you think there is to argue about here.

        Rate: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 9

        • Karen Boyden says:

          Cydney- I’m glad you finally understand your link. Glad I could help. You’re welcome.
          I did notice you never answered my question though. (Sept. 19th post , #2….) “Either you didn’t understand the link you posted or you were purposely trying to mislead the community. Which is it?”

          Rate: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

    • Dudley Do-Right says:

      I cant understand why anyone would take the time to become such an authority on dope as Cydney M.

      I don’t care anything about her bogus studies, statistics or data and she’s obviously NOT a scientist or doctor.

      So what’s in this for her?

      Rate: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 2

      • Don Honda says:

        Being paid by Soros?

        This movement is sponsored by the Drug Policy Alliance, an advocacy group that works to decriminalize drugs and is funded largely by billionaire George Soros. The group has pushed, thus far unsuccessfully, for similar legislation in New York, Maryland, Massachusetts and Vermont.

        Here’s some examples of their thinking:
        http://www.nadcp.org/sites/default/files/2014/NADCP%20Initial%20Response%20to%20DPA%20and%20JPI%20Reports.pdf

        http://www.nadcp.org/sites/default/files/nadcp/NADCP%20Response%20to%20DPA%20and%20JPI%20Media%20Attacks%20on%20Drug%20Courts.pdf

        Rate: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

        • Karen Boyden says:

          Thanks again Don Honda for those 2 links I had heard of this Soros guy a month or so ago and have had it on my list to read up on him. The most disturbing part of these 2 articles is at the very end of the 1st one. They now publish their own informational booklets so they don’t have to verify sources or prove their “facts.” Fabulous.

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      • Karen Boyden says:

        Dudley-Do-Right- GREAT QUESTION! Had been wondering the same myself.
        And furthermore, where did she go? I hope she’s OK. She may have burned out a fuse with her several day rant and needed a vacation.

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      • Cydney M. says:

        I like to be well-informed on important issues, when I can. I feel compelled to do what I can to better my community, and for me that often means advocating for drug policy reforms, therefore I do research on the subject so as to better advocate for scientifically-sound reforms and public policies that make sense. I’m not getting paid by anybody, and there is no personal gain to be had for me. I do it because I care about my community, and the people living in it – all of them, including those struggling with addiction.

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        • Karen Boyden says:

          Cydney,
          How noble and compassionate of you. One thing I don’t understand though. How can one be so caring about the less fortunate, impoverished, homeless, addicted amongst us and be so condescending, inflammatory, and intolerant of anyone who disagrees with their “scientific, well-researched “ post? I simply have a difficult time believing you based on what I’ve experienced with you on this post. It all paints you in a light which does not match the description of yourself above.

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  7. MichaelJ says:

    ” …although this article stated there was no increase in the number of people using drugs intravenously in the localities where such facilities operated, it was also found that police stopped charging drug users and instead escorted them to the SIS once these were available, creating a mirage of decreased drug charges and use….”

    You try to hide it, but the bias here is all yours. it’s the same faulty logic in reverse some people make for the use of algorithms and sotware to determine what areas have “high crime” rates. Did the police stop charging all drug users, not just those who inject? If just those who inject, that’s not a mirage, that’s a redirection that did not affect other crimes, nor made other crime worse. Context is important.

    Of course those that use are going to have it in their possession when they come in the door, no matter where they came from. Mere possession is not the same thing as distribution or violent and property crime. Use, abuse, and distribution/dealing are quite distinct terms. Use in this case falls under addiction, which the police can now handle as a public health issue, not a criminal one. Thereby saving resources for more serious crimes.

    And it still stands that neither crime nor actual numbers of addicts increased as a result of these centers.

    The AMA pilot recommendation is a proof of concept, and Burien would benefit from it, as well as the rest of the country.

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  8. Don Honda says:

    Portugal is held up as the gold standard for “decriminalizing” drugs and not “judging” the addict. Their programs has some success due to wrap-around services and is mandatory. Drug dealing is still illegal and dealt with harshly. Other EU countries tried to emulate the program. With the 2008 recession, their budgets were slashed for the addicts in program and caused overdoses, increased crime, and increased disease transmission, increased homelessness. Can you see us having an Injections Site AND wrap-around services? I don’t believe there will be funding for both. Why not use any proposed funding and increase needed detox/rehab facilities and sober living environments along with all the needed physical/mental health and social services. The way I see it, Injections Sites are prolonging the suffering and misery of the addict with the usual end result of death. Which would be more compassionate?

    http://www.vancouversun.com/little+evidence+harm+reduction+reduces+harm+more+than+good/8679087/story.html?fref=gc&dti=189308553419

    “The four pillar approach only works when each pillar is properly funded. Prevention reduces the flow of people into addiction. Treatment reduces the number of addicts including those living in the DTES. Policing keeps a lid on the open drug dealing and the affects of the associated problems on the community. Only after these three pillars are properly funded can we afford to spend money on Harm Reduction initiatives that do not encourage abstinence. Putting HR first is like running up debt on your credit card and never paying more than your minimum payments.”

    http://www.globaldrugpolicy.org/Issues/Vol%201%20Issue%203/A%20Critical%20Evaluation.pdf

    THE JOURNAL OF GLOBAL DRUG Policy AND PRACTICE
    A Critical Evaluation of the Effects of Safe Injection Facilities
    Garth Davies, Simon Fraser University

    Conclusion: Taking Causality Seriously
    On the subject of the effects of SIFs, the available research is overwhelmingly positive. Evidence can be found in support of SIFs achieving each of the goals listed at the beginning of the evaluation. In terms of our level of confidence in these studies,the assessment offered here is far less sanguine. In truth,none of the impacts attributed to SIFs can be unambiguously verified. As a result of the methodological and analytical problems identified above, all claims remain open to question.

    http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ahc-asc/pubs/_sites-lieux/insite/index-eng.php

    Vancouver’s INSITE service and other Supervised injection sites: What has been learned from research?

    Final report of the Expert Advisory Committee

    http://www.kiro7.com/news/local/councilwomans-idea-for-seattle-safe-injection-site-locations-belltown-lake-city/466411868

    “At the Vancouver site, the manager said since opening in 2003, the overdose death rate in the area around the clinic has dropped 35 percent. But the clinic also estimates 15 to 20 percent of people using the site come from other parts of the country specifically for it.”

    http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/health/is-vancouvers-safe-drug-use-site-a-good-model-for-seattle/
    “Although research appears to bear that out, many of the studies that attest to Insite’s success are small and limited to the years after the center opened. For instance, a 2011 study published in the journal The Lancet found a 35 percent reduction in overdose deaths in the blocks surrounding Insite, versus 9 percent in the rest of Vancouver.

    But that often-cited study looked only at the period two years before and two years after the center opened, not the ensuing decade.”

    http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/health/is-vancouvers-safe-drug-use-site-a-good-model-for-seattle/

    “Although Insite is paired with a drug-treatment center, called Onsite, Berner and other critics point out that completion rates are low. Of the 6,500 people who visited Insite last year, 464 were referred to Onsite’s detox center. Of those, 252 finished treatment.”

    The Vancouver Insite was placed in a crime-ridden, drug-ridden, low-income neighborhood. It only got worse.

    http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/health/is-vancouvers-safe-drug-use-site-a-good-model-for-seattle/
    “Although the Insite center is a model, the Vancouver neighborhood surrounding it is nothing to emulate, advocates acknowledged.

    “If I came from a city like Seattle and I went to that Insite place, it would scare the hell out of me,” Kral said. “I would think, ‘Are we going to create one of those?’ ””

    http://news.nationalpost.com/news/vancouvers-gulag-canadas-poorest-neighbourhood-refuses-to-get-better-despite-1m-a-day-in-social-spending
    Vancouver’s ‘gulag’: Canada’s poorest neighbourhood refuses to get better despite $1M a day in social spending

    What do you think would happen if this was placed in a middle-class neighborhood, or, ANY neighborhood?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=audzsuRMWBE&t=586s
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwJkqTZ5H_s

    http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/brian-hutchinson-thousands-of-used-drug-needles-have-become-the-new-normal-for-vancouver
    4/27/2016
    Brian Hutchinson: Finding used drug needles in public spaces has become the new normal for Vancouver

    http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/mark-hasiuk/insite-vancouver_b_3949237.html

    “Ten years later, despite any lofty claims, for most addicts, InSite’s just another place to get high.”

    The 100% positive studies on Vancouver’s Insite (Safe Injection Facility) was done “Early last decade, Montaner and Kerr lobbied for an injection site. In 2003, the Chretien Liberals acquiesced, gave the greenlight to B.C.’s Ministry of Health, which, through Vancouver Coastal Health, gave nearly $1.5 million to the BC Centre (that’s Montaner and Kerr, you remember them) to evaluate a three-year injection site trial in Vancouver.

    I asked him about the potential conflict of interest (lobbyists conducting research) and he ended the interview with a warning. “If you took that one step further you’d be accusing me of scientific misconduct, which I would take great offense to. And any allegation of that has been generally met with a letter from my lawyer.”

    Was I being unfair? InSite is a radical experiment, new to North America and paid for by taxpayers. Kerr and company are obligated to explain their methods and defend their philosophy without issuing veiled threats of legal action.”

    In the media, Kerr frequently mentions the “peer review” status of his studies, implying that studies published in medical journals are unassailable. Rubbish. Journals often publish controversial studies to attract readers — publication does not necessarily equal endorsement. The InSite study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, a favourite reference of InSite champions, appeared as a “letter to the editor” sandwiched between a letter about “crush injuries” in earthquakes and another on celiac disease.”

    Really? What kind of “science” produces dozens of studies, within the realm of public health, a notoriously volatile research field, with positive outcomes 100 per cent of the time? Those results should raise the eyebrows of any first-year stats student.”

    And who’s more likely to be swayed by personal bias? InSite opponents, questioning government-sanctioned hard drug abuse? Or Montaner, Kerr and their handful of acolytes who’ve staked their careers on InSite’s survival? From 2003 to 2011, the BC Centre received $2,610,000 from B.C. taxpayers to “study” InSite. How much money have InSite critics received?”

    There has never been an independent analysis of InSite, yet, if you base your knowledge on Vancouver media reports, the case is closed. InSite is a success and should be copied nationwide for the benefit of humanity. Tangential links to declining overdose rates are swallowed whole. Kerr’s claims of reduced “public disorder” in the neighbourhood go unchallenged, despite other mitigating factors such as police activity and community initiative. Journalists note Onsite, the so-called “treatment program” above the injection site, ignoring Onsite’s reputation among neighbourhood residents as a spit-shined flophouse of momentary sobriety.”

    http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ahc-asc/pubs/_sites-lieux/insite/index-eng.php

    Reducing the Transmission of Blood-Borne Viral Infections & Other Injection Related Infections

    “Self-reports from users of the INSITE service and from users of SIS services in other countries indicate that needle sharing decreases with increased use of SISs. Mathematical modeling, based on assumptions about baseline rates of needle sharing, the risks of HIV transmission and other variables, generated very wide ranging estimates for the number of HIV cases that might have been prevented. The EAC were not convinced that these assumptions were entirely valid.
    SISs do not typically have the capacity to accommodate all, or even most injections that might otherwise take place in public. Several limitations to existing research were identified including:
    Caution should be exercised in using mathematical modelling for assessing cost benefit/effectiveness of INSITE, given that:
    There was limited local data available regarding baseline frequency of injection, frequency of needle sharing and other key variables used in the analysis;
    While some longitudinal studies have been conducted, the results have yet to be published and may never be published given the overlapping design of the cohorts;
    No studies have compared INSITE with other methods that might be used to increase referrals to detoxification and treatment services, such as outreach, enhanced needle exchange service, or drug treatment courts.
    Some user characteristics relevant to understanding their needs and monitoring change have not been reported including details of baseline treatment histories, frequency of injection and frequency of needle sharing.
    User characteristics and reported changes in injection practices are based on self-reports and have not been validated in other ways. More objective evidence of sustained changes in risk behaviours and a comparison or control group study would be needed to confidently state that INSITE and SISs have a significant impact on needle sharing and other risk behaviours outside of the site where the vast majority of drug injections still take place.”

    “It has been estimated that injection drug users inject an average six injections a day of cocaine and four injections a day of heroin. The street costs of this use are estimated at around $100 a day or $35,000 a year. Few injection drug users have sufficient income to pay for the habit out through employment. Some, mainly females get this money through prostitution and others through theft, break-ins and auto theft. If the theft is of property rather than cash, it is estimated that they must steal close to $350,000 in property a year to get $35,000 cash. Still others get the money they need by selling drugs.”

    http://www.vancouversun.com/little+evidence+harm+reduction+reduces+harm+more+than+good/8679087/story.html?fref=gc&dti=189308553419

    “In addition, the federal government’s Advisory Committee on Drug Injection Sites report only five per cent of drug addicts use the injection site, three per cent were referred for treatment and there was no indication the crime rate has decreased, as well as no indication of a decrease in AIDS and hepatitis C since the injection site was opened.”

    https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/massive-price-hike-for-lifesaving-opioid-overdose-antidote1/
    Massive Price Hike for Lifesaving Opioid Overdose Antidote

    Suddenly in demand, naloxone injector goes from $690 to $4,500

    Should we follow the money? Who would be profiting bigly from the increased use of naloxone?

    https://www.bramptonguardian.com/community-story/7520683-money-and-resources-for-drug-rehabilitation-sorely-needed-in-peel-say-advocates/

    “Setting up free injection sites to deal with the recent spate of drug overdoses does not address the root of the opioid problem, says Ted Brown, executive director of Brampton’s Regeneration Outreach Community.

    Instead, Queen’s Park and other tiers of governments should consider investing resources and dollars toward rehabilitation programs to help those dealing with addiction and mental health issues, said Brown. ”

    http://www.bcmj.org/premise/supervised-injection-sites%E2%80%94-view-law-enforcement
    Supervised injection sites—a view from law enforcement

    Jamie Graham, former chief of Vancouver Police has outlined the successful model of dealing with an epidemic: Support, mandatory treatment, abstinence, and counseling as all part of the solution. My recover(ed)(ing) addict friends say they would agree.

    https://mosaicscience.com/story/iceland-prevent-teen-substance-abuse
    Iceland knows how to stop teen substance abuse but the rest of the world isn’t listening

    In Iceland, teenage smoking, drinking and drug use have been radically cut in the past 20 years. Emma Young finds out how they did it, and why other countries won’t follow suit.

    http://www.vancouversun.com/little+evidence+harm+reduction+reduces+harm+more+than+good/8679087/story.html?fref=gc&dti=189308553419

    “The current campaign reports significant reductions in drug overdoses, yet the Government of British Columbia Selected Vital Statistics and Health Status Indicators show that the number of deaths from drug overdose in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside has increased each year (with one exception) since the site opened in 2003.”

    https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2017/05/05/pigeon-nest-needles-highlights-vancouvers-drug-problem/101323878/

    Pigeon nest of needles highlights Vancouver’s drug problem

    Some graphs about how overdoses in Vancouver, BC have increased:

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/4937e3e285c02900541696be294c99859dd986654fc2ea3b3b1f41f673618dc7.png

    One more: https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d2f8aa542d4033a1f198a3b0e3e802482a4becf1e45b04e77079e989e5c6460a.jpg

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    • Cydney M. says:

      You link to opinion pieces and have a notable lack of actual studies in your long-winded reply – just an assortment of commentary from various critics, without any data to show for it.

      You also clearly have no idea how to critically review data, and are parroting people who would take advantage of that ignorance. Suggesting that the safe injection site is somehow ineffective because overdose deaths are on the rise is ridiculous, considering drug use is on the rise literally everywhere across our continent, and expecting a single safe injection site to somehow stem the literal epidemic of drug use and overdoses is pretty absurd. Yes, overdoses are on the rise, because drug use as a whole is on the rise; no, this does not speak to the effectiveness of the safe injection site in Vancouver.

      The same goes for your commentary on disease – just because disease rates did not decline in the area of the safe injection site does not suggest that the safe injection site is ineffective at preventing the spread of disease, especially when evidence has shown that areas surrounding safe injection sites show a significant lack of new infections, while other parts of their host cities see a steady increase of new cases of infection. If disease rates are going up everywhere besides the areas where safe injection sites are located, that means they are being effective at stemming transmission.

      The quotes you mention about the state of the neighborhood Insite is located is are meaningless, as that neighborhood was in poor condition when they launched the facility, and they located it there specifically because of the high population of addicts in the area. Claims that the neighborhood “got worse” are unfounded, and data shows consistently that there is no increase in crime linked with safe injection sites, including the one in Vancouver. Again, the Vancouver Police Department support their safe injection site, and they are the ones patrolling the area, so they would know if there was an increase in crime correlated with opening the facility, and probably wouldn’t be actively supporting it if that were the case.

      The suggestion that Insite is ineffective at directing people towards treatment because the number of addicts who enter treatment at their on-site facility is low is quite misleading; for one, any amount of addicts turning towards treatment is good, so even minute increases in the number of people who seek treatment is still a victory, and two, these numbers fail to inlude the people who sought treatment off-site, including counseling, methadone clinics, etc. Thus, the rates you are suggesting people are seeking treatment at are artifically low.

      You link to sources well-known for being biased and unreliable, such as the Journal of Global Drug Policy and Practice, which exists solely to perpetuate prohibitionist policies that favor harsh legal penalties over harm reduction strategies or approaches oriented in medical science – not surprising, given that they are funded by the U.S. Department of Justice. And clearly they have no evidence to support their assertions that ALL studies conducted on safe injection sites are bunk. You can call into question one study, or some studies, or question the work of one author, or a couple of authors, but you cannot issue a blanket statement asserting that every study done on the subject that does not agree with your stance is somehow invalid. That claim alone should raise suspicion about any report issued from an institution that would make such a wild accusation.

      This also holds true to the accusations made toward the pair of authors in Vancouver that suggests their research is unreliable; even if you want to totally discount every finding they have ever produced (not that I’m suggesting you should), this would not invalidate the findings presented by other authors that reach the same conclusions, of which there are plenty.

      You also posted links to findings that support what I have said about safe injection sites, such as the Final Report of the Expert Advisory Committee on Supervised Injection Site Research, which concludes that sharing of needles decreases, no increase in crime in the area, encourages people to seek treatment, etc. So, I guess, thanks for reiterating the information I already put out there in favor of safe injection sites.

      Noting a hike in the price of naloxone means absolutely nothing in this debate; suggesting that we stop using life-saving medicine because the manufacturer hiked the price is preposterous, and I wouldn’t even imagine entertaining that thought. You don’t let people die because the medication to save them is expensive. You can discuss regulating the pharmaceutical industry – and we should – but you cannot advocate letting people die of overdose because the company producing the medication to reverse them is taking advantage of the increased demand for the product, due to an opioid epidemic in our society. And, it is way cheaper to administer narcan on-site at a safe injection facility than it is to send out an entire first responder team to administer narcan, treat them for any other injuries they might have incurred from injection or overdosing, then take the person to the hospital, evaluate them, etc. etc. There is research that shows the cost-effectiveness of safe injection sites vs. outbound emergency response calls. Also, people are often alone when injecting, so there may not be anyone around to call for help, or those who are nearby might fear getting into trouble themselves and hesitate to call, which can, and does, literally make the difference between life and death.

      I also just want to point out that your whole tirade here focuses almost solely on Vancouver’s safe injection site, while primarily ignoring the other programs operating around the world that mirror similar results.

      In summation, I find your rebuttal here to be pointless and devoid in any substantive evidence disproving the scores of data compiled by various researchers around the world and supported by respected medical institutions and organizations. Nice try, though.

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      • Don Honda says:

        Thanks for trying to misconstrue my comment so that others will be swayed by your tirades. When in doubt, attack someone’s sources, as you have demonstrated. Also, then you agree with some of my sources but misconstrue the conclusions they have come to.

        I suppose you are afraid for people to have more information to decide for themselves.

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        • MichaelJ says:

          Targeting ones sources is completely in-bounds in an honest and civil debate, rather than the one citing those sources. That is, if one is really interested in the truth, and not supporting their confirmation biases. And assuming that one knows how to read a science-based anaylysis vs. an opinion-editorial.

          Rate: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 24

          • Don Honda says:

            There is such a thing as informed opinion, which I believe I presented.

            Rate: Thumb up 24 Thumb down 5

            • MichaelJ says:

              There is also such a thing as someone who has a particular self-interest against anything that might be a threat to their job. The op-ed author in particular.

              Propaganda is not a equal subsitute for the scientific method. Beliefs are not the same as facts.

              Rate: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 25

              • Don Honda says:

                The same can be said of those who lobbied for Vancouver’s INSITE SIS and were then paid several $Million by the government to self-study its efficacy and, lo and behold, several unscientific and statistically unsound, anecdotal, but 100% positive studies were “published.”

                I won’t bother mentioning how long ago these were done.

                Rate: Thumb up 26 Thumb down 3

                • MichaelJ says:

                  And who judged it “scientifically unsound?” A non-scientist more interested in law enforcement than actually addressing the issues productively.

                  Rate: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 18

                  • Don Honda says:

                    I find it interesting and flattering that you are only focused on one of my links: HuffPo, “Is InSite Really All It’s Cracked Up To Be?”, by
                    Mark Hasiuk. But did you miss some of the pertinent and relevant links in my OP?

                    http://www.globaldrugpolicy.org/Issues/Vol%201%20Issue%203/A%20Critical%20Evaluation.pdf

                    THE JOURNAL OF GLOBAL DRUG Policy AND PRACTICE
                    A Critical Evaluation of the Effects of Safe Injection Facilities
                    Garth Davies, Simon Fraser University

                    Conclusion: Taking Causality Seriously
                    On the subject of the effects of SIFs, the available research is overwhelmingly positive. Evidence can be found in support of SIFs achieving each of the goals listed at the beginning of the evaluation. In terms of our level of confidence in these studies,the assessment offered here is far less sanguine. In truth,none of the impacts attributed to SIFs can be unambiguously verified. As a result of the methodological and analytical problems identified above, all claims remain open to question.

                    http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ahc-asc/pubs/_sites-lieux/insite/index-eng.php

                    Vancouver’s INSITE service and other Supervised injection sites: What has been learned from research?

                    http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ahc-asc/pubs/_sites-lieux/insite/index-eng.php

                    Reducing the Transmission of Blood-Borne Viral Infections & Other Injection Related Infections

                    “Self-reports from users of the INSITE service and from users of SIS services in other countries indicate that needle sharing decreases with increased use of SISs. Mathematical modeling, based on assumptions about baseline rates of needle sharing, the risks of HIV transmission and other variables, generated very wide ranging estimates for the number of HIV cases that might have been prevented. The EAC were not convinced that these assumptions were entirely valid.
                    SISs do not typically have the capacity to accommodate all, or even most injections that might otherwise take place in public. Several limitations to existing research were identified including:
                    Caution should be exercised in using mathematical modelling for assessing cost benefit/effectiveness of INSITE, given that:
                    There was limited local data available regarding baseline frequency of injection, frequency of needle sharing and other key variables used in the analysis;
                    While some longitudinal studies have been conducted, the results have yet to be published and may never be published given the overlapping design of the cohorts;
                    No studies have compared INSITE with other methods that might be used to increase referrals to detoxification and treatment services, such as outreach, enhanced needle exchange service, or drug treatment courts.
                    Some user characteristics relevant to understanding their needs and monitoring change have not been reported including details of baseline treatment histories, frequency of injection and frequency of needle sharing.
                    User characteristics and reported changes in injection practices are based on self-reports and have not been validated in other ways. More objective evidence of sustained changes in risk behaviours and a comparison or control group study would be needed to confidently state that INSITE and SISs have a significant impact on needle sharing and other risk behaviours outside of the site where the vast majority of drug injections still take place.”

                    Rate: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 0

                    • MichaelJ says:

                      No I did not miss that. That those are normal cautions that basically say “your milage may vary” that those who understand the Scientific Method use to address bias. It is not a foundation for outright rejection of the studies in favor of non-scientific opinions based upon confirmation biases and personal agendas.
                      Did you miss the cautions and conditions that would need to be adressed by the AMA study? Are you willing to support them?

                      Rate: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 14

                    • MichaelJ says:

                      Missing a word: Are you willing to support ADDRESSING them?

                      Rate: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 13

                    • Don Honda says:

                      Karen Boyden seems to be doing an excellent job in that regard.

                      Rate: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 3

  9. Christa Lee-Allender says:

    I don’t need a study or a focus group telling me the benefits of a SIS in my neighborhood. I’ve known and worked with addicts and I feel for them, but until they are mentally ready to kick the habit I don’t see how allowing an addict to shoot up is going to help. I would support a mandatory 28 day treatment facility. Call it safe, medically supervised or whatever you think will help sway the public, but in the end it’s still just a shooting gallery. I’d be curious to hear from a real addict, recovering or otherwise what they think but it still wouldn’t change my mind. I’m not being judgemental, I’ve had my own demons to conquer. And I would be hard pressed to explain to my preteen what the little shop on the corner is for. It’s bad enough with the giant marijuana billboards all over the place! Just my opinion and I would definitely vote no on SIS.

    Well-liked. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 49 Thumb down 8

  10. MichaelJ says:

    That Vancouver Sun article from 2013 was an opinion-editorial. The author cites the increases in overdoses without mention of the increases in general population, makes unsupported claims that people moved to Vancouver for no other reason than this, then uses it to ignore the fact that there were over 200 people who went to treatment as a result of their visits and were successfully treated. No mention at all about the public health issues and the containment of AIDS and HepC either.

    Then he closes with this: “…Harm reduction and Insite are palliative. They both spring from a deeply cynical and arrogant world view: You are an addict and you are hopeless. We will keep you “comfortable” while you continue to die.

    This is a curious position considering the millions of men and women who admit they are addicts and choose every day not to pick up their poison. I know many such clean and sober citizens…”

    This is someone who has no clue about the nature of opioid addiction or literal harm reduction in reality, and that more people die without harm reduction policies than from them. The cynicism is all his.

    Yes, all the “pillars” need to exist to be successful. You don’t need the treatment centers on site, and you don’t even need them setup in Burien. What you need are people there who can make referrals and provide counseling.

    Rate: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 27

  11. David Silver says:

    If this SIS does happen – I hope the DEA busts every single worker at the facility as a party to the crime. Including whatever local pols vote to create a Scheduled Drug operation.

    Rate: Thumb up 39 Thumb down 5

    • Tom says:

      Harsh Mr. White,harsh. Tom

      Rate: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 20

      • David Silver says:

        I intend to report this operation to the Feds the instant it pops up. Video the operation and maybe establish a 24-hour webcam to capture evidence against the workers.

        Rate: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 2

        • Captain obvious says:

          To bad David that opioids medications prescribed by a doctor are perfectly legal. Also the king county opioid task force also works with law enforcement.

          There’s also the issue of the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).

          “We don’t have the federal government coming in here and looking over our shoulder, making marijuana arrests and I don’t expect that to change,” said King County Sheriff John Urquhart. “I have complete confidence they are going to do the right thing.”

          http://komonews.com/news/local/seattle-king-county-move-forward-with-proposed-safe-injection-sites

          Rate: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 20

          • Karen Boyden says:

            Captain Obvious- it seems you and the instigators of this SIS plan for King County are confident that the existing laws governing Sched. I drugs can be circumvented for this noble cause?

            I noted in the AMA link:

            http://www.massmed.org/advocacy/state-advocacy/sif-report-2017/

            that as of Spring of 2017, the MA Med. Soc. saw the laws as being a problem. “Multiple state drug laws would prohibit SIFs from legally operating in the state at present.” As of 2015-16, the legislature there would not pass legalization to be in the presence of heroin. They also recommended that MA apply for a federal exemption from the Controlled Substances Act to pilot a SIF facility.
            Your KOMO link made it sound like there were no issues around this in WA. Perhaps they think that because the opioid problem has been declared a national emergency all laws can be by-passed?

            Rate: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 1

            • Captain obvious says:

              Actually some state laws here in Washington have already been changed.

              http://www.kingcounty.gov/elected/executive/constantine/news/release/2017/May/16-state-law-opioids.aspx

              for funding

              Funds to cover the bill have yet to be appropriated as the Legislature hasn’t passed the biennial budget. However, both the House and Senate proposed budgets have included more than $11 million in federal funding for immediate response for communities throughout the state.

              Rate: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 19

              • QA1 says:

                There was a budget passed last month which I read about over Labor Day weekend. Headlines read they were in such a hurry about it they “forgot” to fund mental illness at all.
                Something very goofy happening with “our” government now, ya think?!

                Rate: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 0

                • Captain obvious says:

                  Looks as if the governor ask for $300 million in mental health funding but only got $116 million.

                  $116 million a big number to say there no funding at all

                  http://q13fox.com/2017/06/30/new-washington-mental-health-budget-doesnt-look-promising-disability-group-says/

                  Rate: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 13

                  • QA1 says:

                    Captain Obvious- no. That’s not it. I will find and post later.

                    Rate: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

                  • Karen Boyden says:

                    Captain Obvious-This is the info I was referrIng to last evening:

                    The budget was passed in a hurry and in a way which prevented vetting. Our politicians passed it CUTTING MENTAL HEALTH & SUBSTANCE ABUSE TREATMENT IN KING COUNTY BY 18 MILLION OR 8% COMPARED TO LAST YEAR.

                    http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/politics/why-open-government-matters-state-cut-mental-health-funding-by-mistake/

                    This adds more concern to opening any SIS anywhere in our state in my opinion. The AMA and Massachusetts Medical Society both recommended after their complete reviews of all pertinent data of these facilities that the support for a pilot program for SIS’s has only been in the context of “ready access to counseling, referral, rehab, and placement-on-demand for the insured and uninsured. In our present local situation, this is problematic, especially in light of the latest budget. The amount budgeted for this purpose is going in the wrong direction. It would need to be increased substantially to handle the appropriate treatment to help those who decide to quit ruining their lives.

                    Rate: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

                    • Captain obvious says:

                      Ok I read this and it sounds bad at first but it a simple glitch made by both sides while in a rush. The next session they are already talking about how to fix it.

                      Rate: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 11

                • Captain obvious says:

                  The state government was also at a deadline of a government shut down. In a rush to get things done. Agree on things

                  But then again this is kinda going off topic. Talking about other parts of government spending.

                  Rate: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 13

          • David Silver says:

            I think Jeff Sessions is going to enjoy going after these crazy Burien politicians if this SIS happens. And the workers are going to end up in a Federal prison.

            I see nothing in the law that exempts the Burien City Council from RICO actions as a criminal organization when they intentionally participate in a criminal drug trafficking.

            The penalty for participating can be:

            “Life imprisonment for engaging in continuing criminal enterpriseAny person who engages in a continuing criminal enterprise shall be imprisoned for life and fined in accordance with subsection” – 21 U.S. Code § 848 – Continuing criminal enterprise

            And I think everyone now knows exactly which politicians on the Burien City Council the Feds will come looking for.

            Rate: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 3

            • Captain obvious says:

              Sure David silver go a head send as many reports you want. Since e-mailing the city council work out so well for you. That you made a video of the burien police coming to your house to warn you about harassment. I wonder how homeland security deals with false reports or harassment by a individual. I guess you will find out. Since the burien city council is not running this place. It will ran by the King county opioid task force. You might want to ask John urguhart about this program. You can tweet him @SheriffJohnU you could even email him [email protected] or you could ask Dow constantine about this [email protected] you could even ask the governor of Washington about this program http://www.governor.wa.gov/contact/contact/send-gov-inslee-e-message

              Rate: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 15

              • David Silver says:

                Sheriff’s are prosecuted in this country all the time. I wouldn’t hide behind the fantasies you have.

                Rate: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

        • Captain obvious says:

          David Karen and the other people against this and the other policies going on here. You guys should get together and look at moving to Guam you can still be a u.s. citizen but you don’t pay any federal taxes.

          So you wouldn’t have to worry about your tax dollars going these programs. Then people here can deal with these issue’s like intelligent adults. You can worry about what the hell type of bug is that oh it’s a stick. Complain on a local blog about sticks that look like scarry bugs. I don’t know just idea

          Rate: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 16

          • Karen Boyden says:

            Captain Obvious- who said I was concerned about taxes? I never once said I was personally not wanting to pay them. Of course, I don’t want my taxes to support an idea that I know is an insane one….. Please get your facts straight.
            I am concerned that a positively whacky idea will be brought to Burien, especially since Burien is now glaringly one of the few cities in King County with an opioid problem that has not yet voted to refuse opening one here. Doesn’t sit well with me. I have observed a City Council recently which does not care what its constituents want. It would not surprise me if they welcomed this nightmare into Burien.

            Rate: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 1

            • Captain obvious says:

              So infact you don’t want your taxes going for this right?

              Then your better off moving somewhere else.

              You also seem to be so confused how these places are going to be ran.

              You keep comparing Washington laws to Massachusetts laws when they are two different states ran differently from one another. By two different governor’s.

              It really seems more like trying to do a run around of information to confuse people more about this.

              This practice was used against marijuana legalization for years. Lots of lies and confusing information to sway votes.

              Rate: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 13

  12. Dan says:

    The solution is to the issue is to enforce the law, punish them. Supporting them, promoting them will waste money and increase the issue. Trying to pretend to be nice or naive will make the problem grow bigger.

    Well-liked. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 40 Thumb down 5

  13. leroy says:

    As a long time Burien business owner, of a family orientated business, I would have grave concerns as to having such a facility, next to us.

    I have no argument with the potential benefits to public health. I do however have great concern that such a facility would be extremely detrimental to the Burien business core.

    You can spin it anyway you want, but being in close proximity to such a facility, if you own a business will not be a good thing.

    I think I have some rights too, I do not think it is fair, to have what we have worked for, for decades destroyed..

    I have a solution however, if you think something like this would be all that great, then put it your house, or your neighborhood.

    Rate: Thumb up 38 Thumb down 4

    • MichaelJ says:

      No one has reccomended it be sited in the business core. But there are plenty of vacant small business properties outside the core to choose from as one possibility. Northern Ambaum Blvd comes to mind. And yeah, I don’t live far from there.

      You know there are a few rehab centers there already? Don’t see them or their patients blighting the neighboorhoods away from Ambaum….Not all patients are 24/7 hour committed.

      Believe it or not, those concerns can be addressed.

      Rate: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 34

    • QA1 says:

      Leroy,
      Your concern is exactly what the AMA and MA Med. Society listed in their recommendations for the endorsement of a PILOT (i.e. test site) SIS in MA. Like you say, what good would a facility like this be if it destroys the quality of life in the community?
      ” the process should include review of both the societal and individual benifits of the SIFs”

      Rate: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 2

  14. Question Authority says:

    If you want to see first hand what a sanctioned drug center looks like from the outside and the crowd that mills around every morning, just go to the North end of Airport Way near Chinatown. They hand out Methadone etc to the same people I have seen going there for years and years now and what a collection it is. Many just migrate over to the Jack in the box on 4th and Holgate to deal it away or get their usual fix, I see this every day I work and it’s all payed for by our taxes and any version of any drug den does not belong in Burien.

    Rate: Thumb up 36 Thumb down 6

  15. Karen Boyden says:

    Don Honda-thanks for supplying these links. I’m thinking the folks in charge at Insite realized these graphs may lead people to believe perhaps all the glowing data and “scientific publications” they’ve produced since 2003 don’t support the great success they’ve portrayed of their facility? The first link shows total fatal overdoses since 2006 courtesy of the coroners office. (I guess they can’t fudge a graph like this one.):

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d2f8aa542d4033a1f198a3b0e3e802482a4becf1e45b04e77079e989e5c6460a.jpg

    2nd graph shows proportion of OD’s in B.C. linked to fentanyl 2012 to ~1st half 2016:

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/4937e3e285c02900541696be294c99859dd986654fc2ea3b3b1f41f673618dc7.png

    Rate: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 1

    • MichaelJ says:

      Context matters. That graph shows the number for all of B.C. How does that relate to an SIS on the East side of Vancouver? How many more overdoses would there be without the SIS there?

      You do know that the number of users has risen over the years, and that the number of overdoses can also rise?

      You sound more smug about your ignorance now than rational. Armor cracked?

      Rate: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 12

  16. David Silver says:

    This heroin effort has been reported to the DEA. Here is a link to the Seattle DEA office. Also, take note of the Seattle Police Officer busted for trafficking marijuana to the East Coast linked to on their web page who is not being prosecuted in Federal Court here in Seattle – probably didn’t hear about that on the local news.

    https://www.dea.gov/divisions/sea/sea.shtml

    Rate: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  17. Karen Boyden says:

    Nothing more to say here. You don’t get it. Good luck.

    Rate: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1