A business that provides clean needles for people who use illegal drugs will be opening in Denver soon, and will be doing so in close proximity to two schools.

A variance to the code passed in Denver eight years ago that kept such things at least 1,000 feet away from elementary and high schools is allowing them to move into a facility that is 1,000 feet from the Contemporary Learning Center and 5280 High School.

Denver Public Schools released a statement about the issue:

“The Harm Reduction Action Center will provide an important service to the community. We are optimistic that they will be good neighbors. As a school district, we will work with the community if any issues arise involving the safety and well being of our students.”

The public's input was not needed due to the board granting the variance to them. Other businesses such as marijuana dispensaries and even liquor stores are required to seek public input and still require the board to allow them to operate. Not seeking public input, even though it was not required makes many in the area feel uneasy.

The Harm Reduction Center had zero complaints in its previous location on Colfax Avenue in Denver. Their new neighbors are hopeful that will continue to be the case.

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