In the Media

Note: This page is under construction as of December 5, 2022.

Top Government Researcher Calls for Easier Access to Drug That Treats Opioid Use Disorder: ‘No Reason Why Not’ | CBS News

November 17, 2022. One day after NIDA director Nora Volkow praised the benefits of expanding methadone access, CBS News editor Kerry Breen provides an overview of the less-than-ideal state of medication-assisted treatment in America.


What It’s Like to Seek Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Use: ‘I Broke Down Crying’ | Today

September 2, 2022. Kerry Breen details the many difficulties, barriers, and inconveniences associated with medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder.


Drug Users Are Nostalgic for ‘Old-School Heroin’ as Fentanyl Takes Over | VICE

November 3, 2021. Vice senior editor Manisha Krishnan uses personal testimony from Daniel Patrick Garrett, Tennessee Harm Reduction’s founding director, about the ever-growing trend of fentanyl and fentanyl analogues replacing heroin in North American illicit opioid markets.


State Sticking to Its Approach on Opioid Epidemic | The Daily Memphian

In May 2021, I was featured in a Daily Memphian article, authored by Ian Round, about the Volunteer State’s response to the opioid epidemic — surprise, surprise, they’re not doing nearly enough! The Tennessee District Attorneys General Conference also published the article as part of their “Fentanyl: The Deadliest High” campaign.


When My Suboxone Doctor Quit on Me, It Left a Frightening Void | Filter

In February 2021, I was featured in a Filter article, penned by Philly-based freelance journalist Brandon Dorfman, about the problems faced by medication-assisted treatment enrollees.


Lessons in Taking Things One Day at a Time, from People in Recovery | Slate

In April 2020, I was featured in a Slate article, written by harm reduction community favorite Zachary Siegel, about COVID’s then-newfound impact on people in recovery.

“Fit for Recovery — A New Take on Recovery” | The Weakley County Press


People are joking around, laughing and enjoying themselves. Why can’t recovery always be this fun?

Like many, I’ve struggled with addiction throughout much of my 25 years here on Earth. In response to the opioid crisis, there seems to be more recovery-related resources than ever before. From my experience, few of them seem to work — and if they do, they don’t work very well.

This weekend, I was invited to Fit for Recovery, a new form of community support for individuals in recovery. The idea came from Chris Smith, the Lifeline Peer Project Regional Coordinator for Northwest Tennessee (technically known as Region 6N).

Smith invited several young men from Hope Center Ministries, a faith-based rehab center in Waverly, to participate. “Right now,” he says, “let’s try this out and see where it goes.”

Participants, seven of us in total, exercised in a local CrossFit gym for an hour before having a group discussion. Although similar to other 12-step groups, this one’s unique — everyone seems much happier and willing to share more than in run-of-the-mill 12-step meetings.

Jordan Bailey notes that exercise has a paradoxical effect: “You feel tired but you almost have more energy at the end of the day.” Smith agrees, noting that exercise “is a replacement” for the dopamine that recovering addicts’ brains fail to produce on their own.

Austin, another participant, notes that pre-discussion exercise primes his mind for better discussion. “You come off the streets after work, your mind’s all jumbled.” After the hour-long exercise session, “I feel more focused, my mind ain’t all crazy.”

Smith, a bona fide exercise freak, compares exercise to recovery. “We work hard until we can’t go any harder. I know I’ve done the work.” He’s not the only one who enjoys being here — everyone else seems to enjoy this novel approach to recovery.

People are joking around, laughing and enjoying themselves. Why can’t recovery always be this fun?

Of course, completely changing our lives will never be easy. It’s not supposed to be easy. Now, however, Northwest Tennessee may have an all-new resource for recovery. 

Garrett, Daniel. “Fit for Recovery — A new take on recovery.” The Weakley County Press, March 23, 2021.

Podcasts… Er, That One Podcast, I Mean

Shortly after I received relatively substantial backlash from a pair of articles I wrote here on Tennessee Harm Reduction — one is “‘People Who Use Drugs’—Slow Your Roll on Person-First Language Like This,” the other is “Where Drug Users’ Unions May Fall Short” — writer, author, recovering addict, harm reductionist, and podcast host (am I forgetting anything?) Zach Rhoads offered to have me on his podcast, placing me alongside The Social Exchange alumni including Stanton Peele, Maia Szalavitz, Carl Hart, Ben Westhoff, and — my personal favorite — Rick Barnett.

Welcome to episode 56!

Today’s guest is Daniel Garrett.

Daniel belongs to a demographic that has not been widely represented on this podcast.

Hailing from rural Northwest Tennessee, Daniel is in his mid-20s, he is bisexual, he is below the poverty line, he’s experienced traumatic events and difficult family circumstances growing up, he has done sex work, and he currently uses illicit drugs (even though he’s actively trying to pursue alternative, more healthy involvements and cut down on (or stop) his drug use.

Fortunately, for the first time in his life, Daniel has found something meaningful and purposeful to pursue– namely, educating the public about harm-reduction. 

Unfortunately, he is often misunderstood by people who mistake his eccentric personality (and blunt way of putting things) as meaning he’s ignorant and/or acting in bad faith.

In my experience, the former is true; the latter is absolutely not.

I hope you’ll find Daniel’s ideas interesting and that you’ll enjoy episode 56! 

Rhoads, Zach. “Daniel Garrett– Shining A Light On Rural Tennessee”. The Social Exchange. May 15, 2020. Accessed October 26, 2021, https://thesocialexchange.libsyn.com/danielfinal