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What is a helping hand when no help is wanted? Kensington Drug Crisis

Safehouse wants to open safe injection sites so heroin users in Kensington can shoot drugs while medical personnel watch. The neighbors are against it, and so am I, but this week, Safehouse petitioned the Supreme Court to weigh in on their plans.

 

If the court approves the plan, Kensington will remain at the mercy of drug-addicted people who believe it’s their right to shoot dope, have sex, and defecate on public streets while living on the sidewalks of a residential neighborhood.

 

And it’s not like the neighbors want these people to remain homeless. In fact, the neighbors have just sent a list of demands to the city, and among them is the demand that these people receive housing. The problem is that many of the addicts want to remain on the streets of Kensington, so they can stay close to the drugs that have trapped them there.

 

I know this because last week, when city workers offered them housing before moving them off the streets, only four people took it. And among those who were moved was a man who defiantly claimed the sidewalk was his home, and vowed to come back.

 

That’s not someone who wants help. That’s someone who wants to keep using, and Safehouse is going to the Supreme Court to make sure he can—in a cushy facility with people who will watch him shoot dope.

 

And while federal law says it’s unlawful to—(1) knowingly open, lease, rent, use, or maintain any place … for the purpose of manufacturing, distributing, or using any controlled substance,

 

Safehouse says that law only applies to crackhouses, not to them.

 

Since crack is generally associated with Black people, and most of the people dying from heroin overdoses are white, their argument sounds racist to me, and I’m not buying it.

 

I hope the Supreme Court doesn’t buy it either.

Photo: Philadelphia City Hall By. Domenico Convertini

Creative Commons License

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