When you join a Syringe Exchange Program (SEP) — like Evergreen Health’s in Buffalo and Jamestown— you become protected in more ways than one.
Exchanging old or dirty needles for clean syringes not only reduces the chance of getting HIV, Hepatitis C, other viruses or infection, it also provides you with a level of legal protection. Syringe possession — without being enrolled in an SEP — is a crime in New York state.
Joining is easy and can be anonymous.
When you ask to join our Syringe Exchange, you will be given access to clean syringes and injection works, along with an SEP identification card. We respect your privacy; you don’t have to provide your name or any contact information to be part of the program. Additionally, the ID card we use is special to Evergreen and no personal information will ever be given to police about SEP members.
Here’s where your SEP card comes in.
If you are ever stopped by police with syringes on you, show them your SEP card. There is a 24/7 number to call that will connect them to an SEP employee at Evergreen, who will confirm you are enrolled in our program.
Reminder: SEP membership does not protect you from charges for drugs or other drug-related items. But you will not catch a charge for the syringes.
We’ll be there for you.
Joining our SEP also connects you to services that include Narcan/overdose prevention training, HIV and Hep C testing, medication-assisted treatment (if interested), and educational and support groups.
To learn more about our Syringe Exchange program and harm reduction model, visit www.evergreenhs.org.