Donatucci proposes plan to ensure communities have a voice in deciding supervised injection site locations
As the debate continues over supervised injection sites in Philadelphia, state Rep. Maria Donatucci is introducing legislation to require community input before one of these medical facilities can open.
“I want to stress the opioid crisis is a public health epidemic, and I am working to make drug treatment options affordable and available to everyone,” said Donatucci, D-Delaware/Phila. “However, we need to ensure transparency is part of the process when deciding the location of supervised injection sites. The public deserves information and input about what is going into their neighborhoods.”
During a news conference Monday at City Hall, Donatucci joined elected officials to discuss how her bill, which is a companion bill to Sen. Anthony Williams’ S.B. 933, would:
- Require three public hearings be held in the community of the proposed supervised injection site.
- Give authorization for supervised injection sites via ordinance or resolution by the municipality in which the site would be located.
“We can’t lose sight of the fact that individuals battling addiction are people with rights just like the rest of us,” explained Donatucci. “But we must also give a quality of life to the lives we save.”
The nonprofit organization Safehouse planned to open a supervised injection site in South Philadelphia after a federal judge ruled that the site would not break current federal law.
After vocal opposition from the community, and their original location no longer supporting operations at that site, Safehouse no longer has immediate plans to open a supervised safe injection site in the city.