Drugs & Alcohol
Drugs and alcohol have a steady presence in our society and culture. In addition to having wide-ranging effects on individual behavior, social interactions and our communities as a whole–the assumptions and perceptions that accompany different drugs vary widely as well.
How we understand the roles that drugs and alcohol play in our society, and their effects on individuals, influences how we manage their use and mitigate the damage that they can cause to our ability to function in the world, to our relationships, and to ourselves.
THE PHILOSOPHY OF HARM REDUCTION
Harm reduction is a guiding set of strategies that can be applied to drug and alcohol use. Central to the idea of harm reduction is that, for better or worse, drugs and alcohol play a role in our world, culture and society. Instead of ignoring drug use or attempting to keep people from using drugs and alcohol, harm reduction strategies are offered without judgement to reduce the negative consequences associated with drugs and alcohol.
Harm reduction strategies can include reducing use, managing use, substituting one drug for another, complete abstinence, and more.
People who use drugs and alcohol are people first, and they deserve respect and dignity no matter what substances they use, how they use them, or for how long. We help people who use drugs to pick evidence-based strategies to reduce the harm that drugs and alcohol can cause.
Syringe Access & Safer Drug Use
We provide safer drug use supplies to people who inject or use other substances in order to prevent the transmission of HIV, hepatitis C and other infectious diseases.
Drug & Alcohol Counseling
We provide non-judgmental, harm reduction-based drug and alcohol counseling and drop-in services for people interested in addressing their substance use. Treatment is a partnership, individually tailored to address each participant’s goals and needs wherever they are in their experience with alcohol and drugs.
The Long View on Harm Reduction in San Francisco
Two of our leaders at SFAF share their memories working in harm reduction in San Francisco since the early '90s--distributing naloxone underground, fighting City Hall to establish needle exchanges, and more.
My Chemical Romance: On Losing a Lover and Turning to Substances
After my former lover died, I turned to drugs and alcohol to numb the pain. At some point, I need to be fully present to find my way through my heartache.
February Updates from Syringe Access Services
There are many myths about fentanyl in San Francisco. Get the real info, here.
January Updates from Syringe Access Services
Find our more about our community programs: Community Sweepers and THREADS (Trans Harm Reduction Education and Drug Use Services).
December Updates from Syringe Access Services
Safe consumption services open in NYC, news on hepatitis C infection rates from the Liver Meeting, and volunteer orientation.
Commitment to support safe consumption services in San Francisco
San Francisco AIDS Foundation stands ready to implement these life-saving strategies when authorized to do so.
November Updates from Syringe Access Services
We are recruiting trans and non-binary folks to participate in a secondary syringe exchange program.
Be good to people who inject & use drugs in medical settings
Our Syringe Access Services team is helping to educate primary care and other medical care providers about stigma related to substance use, and how to provide overdose and safer use supplies competently.