NH divided on needle exchange - 227 participants

Jan 24, 2017

Representative Lino Avellani, R - Sanbornville, is sponsoring HB 610, a bill that would implement needle exchange programs in New Hampshire. Avellani's bill would only authorize needle exchanges operated by AIDS service organizations, substance abuse treatment providers, or licensed healthcare providers. The exchanges would be privately funded. Read more about this issue here. On January 24, Citizens Count, NH’s Live Free or Die Alliance decided to put the issue to its Facebook members, posting the question, “Should NH implement a needle exchange program?”

“Should NH implement a needle exchange program?”

Results: Yes or No Respondents

Needle Exchange Citizen Voices Chart

Participation: 227 participants gave 633 responses

A total of 90% of those participating gave a ‘yes or no’ response to the question. The remaining 10% of participants engaged in the discussion but did not give a ‘yes or no’ response. In total, 227 individuals from New Hampshire contributed a total of 633  responses or reactions to this question. Click here for details on our methodology.

[Note: Citizens Count NH also received additional comments from 76 individuals from outside New Hampshire.]

What Participants Said:

No: The majority of ‘yes or no’ respondents, at 51%, were opposed to authorizing needle exchange programs in New Hampshire.

  • “No. Seems more and more instead of fighting this, we're embracing it.”
  • “Giving away needles to junkies on the tax payers dime for drug use sends the wrong message.”
  • “Why should the government of New Hampshire take an interest in making heroin usage safer for drug users?”

Yes: A minority, at 49% of ‘yes or no’ respondents, were in favor of authorizing needle exchange programs in New Hampshire.

  • “Needle exchanges are extremely important in combatting the Hep C and HIV epidemics.”
  • “Yes. If a private or charity group wishes to fund and run an exchange, fine, but no public funds should be used to support such an effort.”
  • “Drug users are going to use no matter what needles they have. This prevents the spread of diseases as well as stops people from just dropping nasty needles on playgrounds for kids to find.”

Other: As noted above, 10% of those participating did not give a ‘yes or no’ response, instead addressing their comments to related questions and issues.

  • Availability of needles: “Packages of 10 syringes are sold in pharmacies without a prescription for around $5.”
  • Drug policy: “Legalize marijuana and watch the use of heroin decline rapidly.”
  • Uncertainty: “I’d have to think about this… these folks need help, but the dealer should be punished more.”

*Editor selection of actual participant quotes. 



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Related Bill

HB 610 (2017)
Bill Status: In Committee
Hearing date: Feb 07, 2017


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