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Last week, BDP joined Transform Drug Policy Foundation to take part in Take Drugs Seriously – a series of events highlighting the impact of drugs in Bristol and new harm reduction initiatives.
At an exhibition on Thursday at Colston Hall, BDP supported Transform to host a mock Safer Injecting Facility, also known as Drug Consumption Room, giving people the opportunity to discover what a Safer Injecting Facility looks like and how they could help save lives.
Speaking to Sky News at the event, BDP Engagement Worker Deb Hussey explained that:
People are injecting drugs, people are using these drugs, let’s let them do it as safely as possible and while they’re accessing a service like this we can talk to them about making changes around their drug use.
Following a talk from former government drug adviser and leading drugs researcher Professor David Nutt, local politicians and practitioners formed a panel to take part in a Q&A. Speaking as part of the panel, BDP CEO Maggie Telfer described safer injecting facilities as a:
…pragmatic, humane response to the reality for some of the most marginalised and stigmatised groups.
The exhibition featured the latest research and insights into drug use, supply and harm reduction. Including presentations and interactive exhibits on addiction, drug cultures, drug markets, psychedelics, opioid use and more.
BDP’s exhibition stands presented an array of harm reduction projects, from our Bristol-wide Needle & Syringe Programme, to partnership work on Low Dead Space injecting resources, and recent interventions to reduce skin and soft tissue infections for people who inject drugs.
BDP were also on hand to train individuals around the safe administration of Naloxone, the life-saving drug that helps reverse the effects of opioid overdose.
Following Thursdays event, BDP attended a memorial event hosted by Anyone’s Child: Families for Safer Drug Control, where 4,000 ‘forget-me-not’ flowers were planted at College Green in memory of those who have died as a result of drugs. BDP’s Create Space art group were proud to have helped design and make some of the flowers earlier that week.
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