BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — As the debate continues across Massachusetts over the establishment of safe injection sites, one activist group decided to raise awareness by creating a model of a site.
The mock-up site was set up by SIF MA NOW! at the Massachusetts General Hospital Charlestown Health Center to give people an example of what a safe injection facility, or SIF, would look like in Massachusetts.
Syringes, hand sanitizer, alcohol wipes, a tourniquet, and three boxes of Narcan were all on display, along with a large sign stating that no overdose deaths have occurred at these facilities around the world.
“We began this process three years ago encouraging these to open, and since that time, 6,000 Massachusetts residents have died of overdose death,” said Dr. Mark Eisenberg, a physician at MGH Charlestown and member of SIF MA NOW! "We’re tired of waiting."
Advocates stress that these sites do not provide drugs, but rather allow people to use drugs in a safer way.
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh has expressed his support, but Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker remains opposed to the idea.
“I would much rather pursue many of the programs and the policies we’ve put in place, which has made us one of the very few states in the country that’s actually seen a drop in deaths over the past several years,” Baker said.
The model site was on display at MGH Charlestown Wednesday through Friday. Advocates also held a panel on the topic of safe injection sites at MGH Charlestown on Thursday night.
WBZ NewsRadio's Madison Rogers (@_madisonrogers) reports