Aluminum air pipes

Crack pipes given to addicts in ‘safe drug’ sites for Biden $$$: report

Crack pipes are being distributed to drug addicts at some so-called safe drug use sites in major East Coast cities — organizations that could benefit from funding from the Biden administration, according to a new report.

The Free Washington beacon found that five sites in Boston, New York, Baltimore, Washington DC and Richmond, Virginia included the hard drug pipes in so-called “safe smoking kits” – although it’s unclear if some asked or will receive funds from the administration $30 million grant for harm reduction program which will be distributed later this month.

Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) announced the grant program in Februaryclaiming it would pay for “required harm reduction activities for which the money is to be used, including the purchase” of equipment and supplies to enhance harm reduction efforts, such as…kits/ safe smoking supplies”.

At the time, the Free Beacon quoted an HHS spokesperson said safe smoking kits and supplies would include crack pipes – but the Department quickly called the report “inaccurate”.

The Washington Free Beacon reported that cities were supplying suspected crack pipes to safe drug sites.
Terrence Antonio James/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

“The Harm Reduction Grant…is a grant program designed to help Americans struggling with substance abuse stay healthy and safe, prevent overdose deaths, and find pathways to evidence-based treatments. Like all programs that use federal funding, these grants must comply with relevant federal, state and local laws or regulations,” the initial spokesperson had told the outlet, without mentioning the tips in the response.

“SAMHSA does not specify kit elements – only parameters.”

The White House was quick to defend the program, with press secretary Jen Psaki telling reporters that such tips “were never part of the kit”.

August 14, 2019: Domingas DaRosa shows off discarded needles and Narcan he picks up as he cleans up needles on Southampton Street and Melnea Cass Blvd in Boston, Massachusetts.(
The Department of Health and Human Services said its grant can be used to purchase “safe smoking kits/supplies”.
Nicolaus Czarnecki/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via Getty Images

“These were inaccurate reports and we wanted to release information to clarify that,” she said, adding that the kits could include lip balm, alcohol swabs or other materials intended to help prevent the transmission of diseases such as HIV and hepatitis.

HHS also directly denied at the time that any federal funding “will be used either directly or through subsequent reimbursement to recipients to put pipes into safe smoking kits.”

Allie Hunter, co-founder and president of Addiction Response Resources, gives a participant ten dollars in one dollar coins after donating 50 needles to the community needle buy-back program in Nubian Square, Roxbury, MA on September 14, 2021.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki denied that the White House is spending federal funds on crack pipes.
Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

In response to Free Beacon’s report on Thursday, Psaki reiterated that “no federal funding” had gone to purchase the pipes obtained by the outlet.

“This policy does not allow crack pipes to be included,” she added. “I would just like to note that it’s a bit of a conspiracy theory that has spread there. It’s not accurate. There are significant addiction treatment programs for people who have suffered from this which we have seen as an epidemic across the country, and the money is not being used for crack pipes.

In Baltimore, a safe smoking kit distributed by the nonprofit Charm City Care Connection includes glass pipes, copper mesh and instructions on how to use the pipe. The organization has received state funding in the past, including $200,000 in government grants in 2019, according to the Free Beacon report.

A man repairs a watch as he holds a pipe for smoking basuco, a highly addictive drug consisting of low-grade cocaine mixed with coca paste and other substances, in downtown Medellin, Colombia , on February 25, 2022.
The Department of Health and Human Services says it doesn’t decide whether states can issue crack pipes.
JOAQUIN SARMIENTO/AFP via Getty Images

A few hours north of Boston, the Center for Access, Harm Reduction, Overdose Prevention and Education offered a bin of tips for users to tap into. The facility would be operated by the Boston Public Health Commission.

The Alliance’s Lower East Side harm reduction center in New York also provides pipes — for smoking crack as well as methamphetamine — and smoking literature, the Free Beacon found. The center – which has reportedly received $20 million in funding from HHS since 2004 – has also distributed copper mesh, which is used to hold a cracked rock at the end of a pipe.

In Washington DC, the Honoring Individual Power and Strength harm reduction center also provides various tips and has received $3.1 million in funding from SAMHSA since 2018.

The fifth site visited was the River City Harm Redux organization in Richmond. The location provided a crack smoking kit, as well as a meth pipe and two “sniff kits” for users to snort drugs.

It is unclear whether any of these organizations are among the approximately 25 recipients of SAMHSA grants.

The Biden administration should officially announce recipients – which are limited to States; local, tribal and territorial governments; tribal organizations; non-profit community organizations; and primary and behavioral health organizations – later this month.

Recipients will receive up to a grand total of $9,750,000 per year or $29,250,000 over three years – the duration of the program.

HHS declined to provide a list of organizations that applied for Free Beacon funding due to “confidentiality,” the outlet reported.

“No federal funding is used directly or through subsequent reimbursement to recipients to purchase pipes in safer smoking kits,” HHS told The Post on Thursday. “The subsidies include explicit prohibitions on using federal funds to purchase drug paraphernalia. As the United States faces a record number of overdoses, the Biden-Harris administration is focusing on a comprehensive drug control policy focused on stopping the illicit flow of drugs like fentanyl and drug-based policies. evidence that reduces overdoses and saves lives.