Harm Reduction Legal Project

Individuals and communities across the United States are struggling to address the ongoing epidemic of drug-related harm. While some progress has been made, efforts to initiate, expand, and sustain evidence-based and promising initiatives to reduce this harm are often hindered by laws and policies that reflect an outdated, punitive-focused approach to drugs and individuals who use them. 

About the Project
The Network’s Harm Reduction Legal Project works to address the legal and policy barriers that impede the establishment and expansion of evidence-based harm reduction measures such as naloxone distribution, syringe access programs, and access to evidence-based substance use disorder treatment.

The Project provides guidance and consultation to governmental and nongovernmental organizations as well as impacted individuals to assist them in navigating the often extremely confusing maze of existing laws and regulations that hamper harm reduction initiatives. The Project also provides non-partisan, evidence-based publications and training regarding the state of laws impacting individuals who use drugs, individuals in recovery, and their communities, as well as research regarding the impact of those laws.

Subject matter experts are available, at no cost, to provide assistance with research, legal analysis, and strategic guidance as well as referrals to other knowledgeable experts and leading institutions in order to assist organizations and individuals in successfully operating within existing law and policy; and advocates seeking to modify existing legal restrictions on harm reduction initiatives.  

Project Leadership

Corey Davis, J.D., M.S.P.H. is a nationally-recognized expert on harm reduction law and policy. In addition to his role as director of the Harm Reduction Legal Project, he serves as the deputy director for the Network for Public Health Law’s Southeastern Region Office.

 

Request Assistance
For assistance, email harmreduction@networkforphl.org. Follow the Project on Twitter at @harmreduxlegal.

Explore Resources on Harm Reduction
The Network as developed a series of resources on harm reduction and overdose prevention. As the Project develops, additional resources focused on the Project’s law and policy work will be developed. To stay informed on the work of the Project and the Network, sign up to receive the Network Report bi-weekly newsletter.

Senior Attorney Wanted

We are seeking a Senior Attorney to support the Project. The attorney will provide responsive legal technical assistance including research and assessment of laws and policies, consultation on best practices, and strategic guidance to individuals and organizations working to create, expand, and defend syringe access and disposal programs, naloxone distribution programs, supervised consumption facilities, evidence-based treatment, and related initiatives in furtherance of the creation, continuation, and effective operation of harm reduction programs in the United States. Attorneys in good standing of the Bar of a U.S. jurisdiction, with 2-5 years of experience in providing either legal counsel or technical legal support in public health law, harm reduction law and policy, and related fields are encouraged to apply. Learn more and apply.

This project is funded in part by Arnold Ventures.