Clean Up the Streets with the help of PHASA and NNOT by Kelly Penfold

Northern Nevada Outreach Team

The Northern Nevada Outreach Team (NNOT) is out helping with the fight against HIV and HEP C. They go out twice a week and hand out safe sex kits, bleach kits and hygiene kits.  When the team is handing out these items, they are trying to make the city of Reno and the cities that surround Reno safer.

Today, they handed out condoms and bleach kits on Fourth Street in downtown Reno. The team also went to the homeless shelter. They make sure to try to help all those in need. They also try to clean up the streets from dirty and discarded syringes.

During their walk today they found six syringes behind a local bar in town. Luckily, they carry a sharps container with them so that they had a safe canister and could pick them up.  If no one removed them, then someone might try to use them, or a young child might accidentally step on them and hurt themself. This is one of the most dangerous ways for someone to get an STD/STI.

The Northern Nevada Outreach Team works with the Public Health Alliance for Syringe Access (PHASA) and they are trying to get a needle exchange program in Nevada legalized. This is going to be a tough thing to do since many people think that it would be promoting drug use. Our Outreach Team looks at it differently and we think we should be giving unused syringes away to keep all people safe and clean and hopefully free of the diseases that come long with sharing a needle. We all know that IDU’s should only use a syringe once, but some of them can’t afford to get clean ones, which causes them to use it again or even having to share them with someone else.

Kelly Penfold

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