Barren Fiscal Court Committee Supports Needle Exchange Program

On Tuesday November 21st, The Barren County Fiscal Court opened discussion on the Syringe Exchange Program, but the vote was put on pause.

Now, it’s gaining momentum.

Judge Executive Micheal Hale put a pause on the topic and referred it to the Barren County Fiscal Court Administrative Committee to look into it further and then come back with a recommendation.

Following a committee meeting Wednesday, that recommendation is a yes–although it was not unanimous.

The Syringe Exchange Program went into effect in 2015, allowing anonymous drug users to swap their dirty needles with clean ones.

Dennis Chaney, Director of the Barren River District Health Department says the goal is to clean up communities, decrease the opportunity for diseases to spread due to sharing of needles, inform users of resources for help, and to provide disease testing,

“If we can educate ourselves as individuals and as a community about what the consequences of those things are, then overtime when we work together as a community, we’re going to improve our overall health status.”

About 30 communities in Kentucky have begun practicing the program, but Warren County is only 1 of 8 in the Barren River district to do so.

The law requires that the board of health, county government, and city government approve before the program can be implemented.

It will be brought to the floor of the Barren County Fiscal Court for the second time, now with the committee’s recommendation, next Tuesday December 12th.