By Mary DeTurris Poust
Catholic Charities of the Capital Region in Albany, N.Y., is starting a controversial needle exchange program -- the first of its kind by Catholic Charities in this country -- in an effort to prevent IV drug users from contracting AIDS when they share needles.
In an article in the Times Union, Sister Maureen Joyce, R.S.M, CEO of Albany Catholic Charities, said "I understand there will be questions, but this is common sense. I strongly believe in this. It will save lives."
The program will allow drug users to anonymously receive syringes and other medical supplies from a custom van that will be located in areas of Albany where injection drug use is known to be occurring.
Later in the same article, Sister Maureen is quoted as saying that the needle exchange is in keeping with "the stated mission of Catholic Charities" and with the larger mission of Christians to care for others.
"From a theological standpoint, we're not being faithful to our mission if we don't reach out to people addicted to drugs, too," she told the Times Union.
For the full story, click HERE. Let us know in the comment section what you think about Catholic Charities running a needle exchange program.