About

Tennessee Harm Reduction is a community-based organization dedicated to slowing the spread of blood-borne disease, preventing opioid overdoses and resultant drug-related fatalities, and improving the lives of Tennesseans who use drugs. Although we wear several hats, our primary two operations are:

  • Running the state’s leading harm reduction resource (this website!)
  • Operating rural/non-Memphis West Tennessee’s only (underground) syringe exchange

We’re also engaged in academic research, partnering with Ph.D.-holding academics and Ph.D.s-in-progress to prepare submissions for peer-reviewed journals — work that will contribute to the betterment of drug policy and harm reduction at large.

Timeline

  • 2017 – Begins giving out harm reduction supplies (e.g., syringes, naloxone, fentanyl test strips) to people who use drugs and their friends, family members in Northwest Tennessee and Jackson.

  • 2019 – Website founded as Northwest Tennessee Harm Reduction (northwesttennesseeharmreduction.home.blog)

  • 2020 – Website’s name changed to Tennessee Harm Reduction (tennesseeharmreduction.com)

  • May 2021 – Begins collecting used syringes from participants, thus forming rural/non-Memphis West Tennessee’s only (underground) syringe exchange

  • June 2021 – Starts recording participant data, including demographics and risk factors

  • November 2021 – Assembles a board of directors

  • December 2021 – Incorporates Tennessee Harm Reduction as a nonprofit corporation with the State of Tennessee