The city of Portland, Oregon will start to distribute “snorting kits” to drug users as part of a harm reduction plan, according to Fox News. But the decision is even being pushed back against by the city’s Democratic mayor.
The Multnomah County Health Department announced that it will try to ween drug users off of fentanyl use by injection by providing other paraphernalia, including tin foil, straws, and snorting kits. Mayor Ted Wheeler does not see the benefit in the plan, arguing that increasing access to drugs is not going to help those who are already struggling. He cited that drugs are the leading cause of death of Americans below the age of 50 and are responsible for around 190 fatal overdoses per day.
Democratic Portland Commissioner Rene Gonzalez also pushed back on the department’s proposal, arguing that the distribution of paraphernalia sends the wrong message to a city trying to revive itself. She added that drugs are already devastating the community.
Since the Biden administration’s open border policies, fentanyl has reportedly been pouring across the southern border in heavier numbers. Beginning in 2021, federal agents started to seize larger portions of the drug, representing a 4,000 percent increase. Earlier this month, U.S. customs officers reportedly found a large number of fentanyl pills in the shipment of sinks, which had an estimated value of $2.5 million.
CBP officers reportedly stopped a man driving a van crossing the Otay Mesa border crossing in San Diego. So far this year, nearly 20,000 pounds of fentanyl has been seized by CBP officers. Nearly 100,000 pounds of methamphetamines have also been seized.
The Multnomah County Health Department first announced in 2022 that its harm reduction program will include “smoking kits,” but claimed that the kits will not include pipes to smoke drugs.