Syringe exchanges may only exist where a local government votes to authorize them A city or county government may authorize
Program staff and volunteers are protected from arrest for distribution or possession The state laws regarding syringe exchange DO NOT PROTECT PARTICIPANTS from arrest or prosecution
State law does not mention or mandate a cap on the number of syringes that may be distributed
Some laws are temporary, till last day of 2018 Some laws are subject to local approval Some laws are permanent and statewide
Temporary & Localized Until December 31, 2018, local governments may authorize pharmacies within their jurisdiction to furnish or sell 10 or fewer syringes to an adult without a prescription. (Pursuant to Health & Safety Code)
Temporary & Localized Until December 31, 2018, adults within those jurisdictions may legally possess 10 or fewer syringes solely for personal use if acquired by from a lawful source (Health & Safety Code)
Statewide & Permanent Business & Professions Code 4140: No person shall possess or have under his or her control any hypodermic needle or syringe except when acquired in accordance with this article
Statewide & Permanent Syringes in a red-box or a disposal container are not drug paraphernalia. There should never be a prosecution for used syringes in a red-box.
Statewide & Permanent H&S 11364 Paraphernalia misdemeanor: This section shall not apply to hypodermic needles or syringes that have been containerized for safe disposal in a container that meets state and federal standards for disposal of sharps waste.
Permanent & Statewide B&P 4148: All stocks of hypodermic needles or syringes shall be confiscated if found outside the licensed premises of any person holding a permit under Section 4141....
Permanent & Statewide In 2004 we repealed requirements that pharmacists must see ID for persons seeking non-prescription syringes, and that all pharmacists must keep a written log of persons purchasing non- prescription syringes, including name, address, form of ID, etc…
Anyone leaving a jurisdiction where they legally acquired syringes, but passing into a jurisdiction without legal access can be arrested for those syringes ExampleSyringes are legal in the City of Sacramento, but not the County of Sacramento
Some syringe exchange programs operate in cities or counties that have also authorized pharmacy sale and personal possession of up to 10 Their program participants are protected from arrest for 10 or fewer syringes, under state law
Some syringe exchange programs operate in cities or counties that have NOT authorized pharmacy sale of syringes and personal possession Their participants can be arrested walking out the door Examples: City of San Diego, County of Shasta