The Works Program

The Works Program

En Español

The Works Program is a free, legal, and anonymous harm reduction program for people who use drugs and their friends and family in Boulder County.

Works Program Goals & Services

The primary goal of the Works Program is to enable people who use drugs to reduce their risk of disease and overdose death, and increase access to referrals and linkage to supportive services including HIV and hepatitis C testing and treatment, hepatitis A and B immunizations, substance use recovery and mental health resources, etc.

Works Mission

The mission is to provide services in a safe, non-judgmental setting that welcomes, affirms, and accepts everyone regardless of their current drug use practices. The program provides services within the context of harm reduction principles and guidelines, as outlined by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE).

We provide harm reduction supplies (sterile supplies for injecting, smoking, snorting drugs, and overdose prevention materials), education, and resources to people who use drugs in Boulder County.

Overdose Prevention

Overdose prevention has become increasingly essential in combatting the impacts of opioids on a national, state, and local level. Staff and volunteers of the Works Program advocate for people who use drugs and are at risk of an opioid overdose by providing free access to opioid overdose education and resources, including Narcan and fentanyl test strips.

This public health crisis is a serious and ongoing concern for Works Program staff, participants, and the Boulder County community at large. To learn more about harm reduction and the opioid crisis, please see the resources below:

Request Overdose Prevention Training for Your Organization

Education & Case Management Servicesblack sharps container

Works Program staff provide harm reduction education about safer substance use practices including:

Connection to Services

The Works Program is dedicated to supporting clients by connecting them with a variety of community resources. Case management is an option for Works participants who need additional assistance navigating referral services. For more information on case management please email kweigman@bouldercounty.org.

The Works Program connects clients to:

  • Food assistance
  • Housing assistance
  • Clothing assistance
  • Inpatient, outpatient, and medication assisted substance use treatment
  • Mental health treatment
  • Sober living
  • Shelter resources
  • Medical support, including sexual health
  • Medicaid or other health insurance options

If clients have special needs, staff will work to find solutions.

Criminal Justice Diversion Services

The Works Program is committed to serving people who inject drugs who have been diverted out of the criminal justice system through law enforcement or court officials.

In addition to syringe access, safer injection supplies, education services, and case management, diversion clients receive screening to assess the risk of their use, and access to a counselor.

To access criminal justice system diversion services, please email us or call 303-413-7546.

Learn What to Expect at an Exchange

Harm Reduction Supplies

The Works Program provides harm reduction supplies to keep people who use drugs safer. The intention is that a person will access enough supplies so that every use is with sterile/new equipment for themselves and for their network of peers.

  • Sharps containers
  • ID card to protect from paraphernalia charges
  • Safer sex supplies
  • Syringes
  • Cookers
  • Waters
  • Cottons
  • Alcohol wipes
  • Antibacterial ointment
  • Bandages
  • Ties
  • Glass pipes
  • Silicone containers
  • Foil
  • Pipe mouthpiece covers
  • Razor blades
  • Straws
  • Push sticks/manicure sticks
  • Xylitol gum
  • Lip balm
  • Narcan
  • Fentanyl test strips
  • Literature and advice about safer injection practices

Order Supplies by Mail

Existing participants in the Works Program who are unable to come into the office due to challenges with COVID and other access issues can order supplies online. Use this form to let us know what you need. Participants will need to visit the office in order to complete annual surveys as required.

Order Supplies by Mail

Works Program Locations

Boulder

Boulder County AIDS Project (BCAP)
2118 14th Street
Monday – Friday from 2:00 – 5:00 p.m.
303-444-6121

Mental Health Partners
3180 Airport Road
7 days a week, 24 hours a day
303-443-8500

Longmont
515 Coffman St., Second Floor
Monday through Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
720-864-6515.
Public access is through the west and east entrances. All Works participants must check-in with the front desk in the main lobby prior to in person services. Staff can still deliver supplies outside for participants if desired.

Testing Services

Free, confidential and rapid HIV and hepatitis C testing is available in Boulder, Lafayette, and Longmont. Appointments are recommended, but testing may also be available at time of Works Program service, depending on staff availability.

Call to Make a Testing Appointment

  • Boulder: 720-893-1297
  • Longmont: 720-864-6515

Proper Disposal of Syringe Littersyringe disposal drop boxes

Finding a needle or syringe in public can be alarming. Boulder County Public Health does outreach, walks our parks, and communicates with the public about their concerns.

Syringe Disposal

Outdoor syringe collection kiosks are available 24 hours every day at Mental Health Partners (at the front entrance) and Boulder County Public Health Longmont (along the northwest side of the building).

People who don’t feel comfortable picking up used needles should not do it.

But, for those who want to take action or are already doing so, here are some basic safety guidelines to follow:

  • Treat all used needles as contaminated, diseases can spread through needle pokes.
  • Never pick up a needle with your bare hands, wear gloves.
  • Wear closed-toe shoes to protect your feet.
  • Use a tool like tongs, pliers, or tweezers to pick up needles.
  • Don’t discard needles in the trash. Use a sharps container or hard plastic container like a laundry detergent bottle.
  • Put the sharps container on a stable surface next to the needle. Avoid walking a far distance carrying a used needle.
  • Do not hold the container in your hand while placing needles inside it.
  • Pick up needles with the point facing away from you and place them in the container point down.
  • Remove gloves carefully to avoid contact with the contaminated fluid.
  • Wash hands well afterward.
  • If you find discarded needles in your neighborhood, but you don’t feel comfortable picking them up, there are city services available, but these services can become overwhelmed.

Syringe Access Services

Since 1989, Works Program staff and volunteer peer educators have provided outreach, education, and syringe exchange/access services to reduce HIV and hepatitis C transmission among people who inject drugs, and their partners.

The program uses harm-reduction practices founded in public health research to reduce the spread of disease and increase the safe disposal of syringes. Syringe access programs have been proven to reduce syringe litter, reduce overdose deaths, reduce the spread of disease and associated health care costs, and increase entry into substance use disorder treatment.

Addiction is a chronic neurological disorder that should be treated like other chronic illnesses. In fact, people who use substances (and syringe access programs) come from all walks of life at similar rates. Removing stigma and shame can help people living with substance use disorders seek help.

Best Practices, Research, & Data about Syringe Access Programs

The Works Program is a safe, legal, confidential, and non-judgmental place to get free injection supplies, support, and links to other resources to stay safe and healthy.

Learn More About Harm Reduction

Partnerships

The Harm Reduction Program at Boulder County Public Health partners with Recovery Café Longmont and the Boulder County Sheriff’s office to provide:

  • Community recovery support through the Recovery Café in Longmont
  • Boulder County Sheriff’s office to provide assessment and treatment of opioid use disorder within the Boulder County Jail
  • Boulder County AIDS Project to provide harm reduction supplies, education and resources
  • Mental Health Partners to provide harm reduction supplies, education and resources

Works Program Presentations & Trainings

Intro to Harm Reduction & the Works Program with or without Story of Lived Experience

50 minute or 75-minute options available.

50-Minute Option Includes

  • An introduction to harm reduction as a concept, especially as it relates to public health
  • A thorough review of harm reduction for drug use, including topics such as stigma, drug criminalization in the U.S., and harm reduction theory and principles
  • A Works Program overview of services and supplies
  • A briefing of Colorado harm reduction laws and how they support the health of people using drugs, and the broader community

75-Minute Option Includes

  • All the above, plus a story of lived experience from Becky Milanski, Peer Recovery Coach with Recovery Café Longmont (this story is a powerful way to humanize the reality of substance use disorder)

Effective Engagement with People Who Use Drugs

Prerequisite: Introduction to Harm Reduction & the Works Program with or without Story of Lived Experience

60 minutes

Includes

  • A review of why people use drugs and risk factors for substance use disorder
  • The neurobiological effects of substance use
  • Interactive education on communication and engagement strategies for people who use drugs

Naloxone/Narcan Training with or without Harm Reduction Basics

30 minutes

Includes

  • An overview of harm reduction as a public health concept, as well as harm reduction as it relates to substance use
  • What are opioids
  • What is naloxone
  • Recognizing and responding to an overdose
  • Risk factors and harm reduction for opioid overdose
  • Works Program resources and naloxone access

Naloxone Training of Trainers

90 minutes

A certificate of completion and public health developed training materials are provided to all participants who complete the full 90-minute training, with the intention of supporting all participants in becoming naloxone community educators.

Includes

  • An introduction to harm reduction as a concept, especially as it relates to public health
  • A brief review of harm reduction for drug use, including topics such as stigma, and harm reduction theory and principles
  • A Works Program overview of services and supplies
  • A briefing of Colorado harm reduction laws and how they support the health of people using drugs, and the broader community
  • What are opioids
  • What is naloxone
  • Recognizing and responding to an overdose
  • Risk factors and harm reduction for opioid overdose
  • Naloxone access
  • Interactive small group naloxone education practice, led by a Boulder County Public Health Works Program staff member

Overdose Prevention – Parent’s Education with Parent’s Story

60 minutes

Includes

  • A Boulder County parent’s story of their child’s overdose, including live footage of the overdose event
  • A review of the opioid overdose crisis by numbers, with a focus on Boulder County specific data
  • A look into teens and young adults and risk-taking behavior, with an overview of harm reduction principles and theory
  • Strategies for parents of teens and young adults, including tips for communicating and educating about substances and drug use
  • A naloxone training with all the information covered in the standard 30-minute BCPH Works Program naloxone training outlined above
  • Youth and parent specific resources, including naloxone access information

Request Overdose Prevention Training for Your Organization

  • Fentanyl is in Boulder County
  • Fentanyl has a higher potential for overdose than other opioids
  • If you choose to use drugs, follow safety steps
  • Never use drugs alone. If you overdose, they can help you.
  • Get Narcan before you use
  • Remember that similar pills may not be the same strength or contain the same substance even if you got them at the same time.
  • pills take time to absorb and go to your brain, so effects may be delayed up to an hour or longer
  • Learn as much as you can about a substance before using it. If you got a drug from somewhere other than a pharmacy, it's probably not a realy pill.

In the Works Newsletter

In the Works is a community newsletter of updates, support, & personal stories.

2021

2020

2019

Contact Us


Communicable Disease Control

Main: 303-413-7523
303-413-7517 (after hours)
Submit a Question


Location

Boulder
3482 Broadway
Map & Directions
Hours: 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. M-F