Exchanging Ideas On Syringe Exchanges

Our nation has a serious heroin problem fueled by opioid addiction. Recently, The Journal ran two articles on heroin addiction in our community, Scott Sexton’s article actually featured a picture of a user burning heroin on a spoon.  Triad City Beat has done some excellent work on the Twin City Harm Reduction Collective, the city’s first and only syringe exchange. I have followed the city council’s debate on imposing zoning restrictions on syringe exchanges over the last couple of months.… Read the rest

Winston-Salem City Council Meeting Notes-May, 1, 2017

 

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Liberty Street Market: An Investment That Hasn’t Paid Dividends

Liberty Street Market opened in October, 2014. It’s located just a couple of miles from Downtown Winston, yet its worlds away. On one side of Liberty Street Market there’s three convenience stores that specialize in cigarettes and booze. On the other side of the Liberty Street Market is the Cleveland Avenue Homes, Winston’s largest concentration of public housing. Directly beside of the market lies a row of businesses that have been vacant for years.

The Liberty Street Market was supposed … Read the rest

Failure Of Winston’s Welcoming Resolution Demonstrated The Reach Of The Right

It’s been a rainy few days, flooding has occurred throughout the Triad. It’s a good time to reflect on the state of the Left. Our nation is divided more or less equally between conservative and progressive opinions. Yet, Republicans control the White House, Congress and the Supreme Court-thanks largely to Gerrymandering and the unaddressed flaws in our electoral system. In North Carolina we have divided government. Unfortunately though, the bulk of the power in North Carolina remains in the GOP-controlled … Read the rest

Winston-Salem City Council Refuses To Support Undocumented Immigrants

It looked like last night’s Winston-Salem City Council meeting would finally see Council Member Dan Besse’s Welcoming City resolution come to a vote. But that wasn’t the case. In a surprise move, Besse removed his resolution from the city council’s agenda without any opposition or debate. Besse stated that he wasn’t giving up on his Welcoming City resolution. Rather, he was working on a compromise that the city council could endorse. I think it’s time for progressive activists to give … Read the rest

City Won’t Add Additional Needle Exchange Regulations-For Now

Monday afternoon, the Public Safety Committee of the Winston-Salem City Council failed to pass a resolution restricting the location of needle exchanges in Winston. The North Carolina General Assembly legalized needle exchanges last year. But the General Assembly prohibited needle exchanges operating in North Carolina from receiving any government funding.

Thus needle exchanges like Twin City Harm Reduction Collective don’t have the funding to operate in a commercial areas. Council Member John Larson has been pushing for the city to … Read the rest

Needle Exchanges: Approved By NCGA, But Scrutinized By W-S City Council?

If you haven’t read much about Winston’s needle exchange collective, now is a good time to catch-up on the subject. Perhaps your ignorance is attributable to the Winston-Salem Journal‘s failure to adequately cover the topic. While our local paper of record has snoozed, Triad City Beat has given Winston’s needle exchange extensive coverage.

On March 1, Jonathan Michel wrote an in-depth article on The Twin City Harm Reduction Collective, a needle exchange program founded by Colin Miller and Erica … Read the rest

One Thing Winston Can Do To Help It’s Hispanic Community…

Last night’s Winston-Salem City Council meeting was full to capacity. A couple dozen activists turned out to encourage the city council to consider becoming a sanctuary city. It’s unlikely that the city council will vote to make Winston a sanctuary city, doing so would allow the state to withhold badly needed funds from the city. But that doesn’t mean that local activists should fold  up their tents and go home. It’s important for members of the community to stand … Read the rest

City-Wide Poverty Solutions Can’t Be Implemented By The Dozen

It’s been a week now since Mayor Joines’ anti-poverty Thought Force released their final report. I hope local activists and concerned citizens have by now taken the time to read it. The 56-page report contains some excellent information. I found the first two sections to be especially valuable. They provide a helpful overview and analysis of poverty in Winston-Salem. But I found the conclusions, recommendations and suggested next steps of the anti-poverty Thought Force a little disappointing. Instead of … Read the rest

Apparently Poverty Can Wait In Winston-Salem

It’s finally done. Or perhaps it’s just beginning to unfold. Mayor Allen Joines’ Poverty Thought Force finally released its findings on Monday. It’s been a long wait. Mayor Joines first mentioned his intention of creating a Thought Force in December of 2013. Triad City Beat’s Jordan Green’s article, A city divided: The resurgent downtown and the abandoned urban core-my favorite article of 2016, has the timeline. It took two more years and a few national studies casting Winston in … Read the rest