Syringe Services Programs, or SSPs, provide intravenous drug users a place to swap their used needles for clean ones in order to prevent the spread of diseases like hepatitis C and HIV. But their implementation has faced tough opposition in some of the communities that seem to need them the most. In this project, we investigated the journey of one SSP located in Austin, Indiana, a small town near the Kentucky border, which was rocked by an HIV outbreak spread by intravenous drug use in 2015. Through a combination of audio and visual elements, we’ll look beyond the science of SSPs to get to the heart of these intriguing interventions. What led up to the need for an SSP in Austin? How does it function in the community? And what was and is at the heart of opposition to its implementation?

Click on the image to check out our presentation, or here.

Background image from Prindle Post.


— Amy Cho, Sean Crites, and Maya V. Mishra