Flashpoint: War over safe injection site; Rendell says Safehouse is coming; Vision 2020

March 01, 2020 - 6:30 am
This week's panel includes (right to left) Councilman Kenyatta Johnson, Anthony Giordano, and James Gitto.

Allie Amato/KYW Newsradio


PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — This week on Flashpoint: Host and KYW Community Affairs reporter Cherri Gregg asks the burning questions over the battle to open the nation's first safe injection site. 

Safehouse won a federal lawsuit that opened the door for it to open its very first location and it announced the first location would be in South Philadelphia. They held a press conference letting the public know for the first time, the site would open on Constitution Plaza on South Broad Street in a week. The outrage and backlash were swift. 

And within just a couple of days, the nonprofit announced the site would not open until there was a community meeting. Within hours, news came that the landlord pulled the lease. So now Safehouse has to find a new location, but they are not giving up as activists and elected officials double down. 

Councilman Kenyatta Johnson joins Anthony Giordano, founder and president of Stand Up South Philly and Take Our Streets Back #Unite, and James Gitto, a South Philadelphia resident who is the president and zoning chair of West Passyunk Neighbors.

 Former Governor of Pennsylvania Ed Rendell speaks onstage at the Pennsylvania Conference For Women 2013.
Lisa Lake/Getty Images for Pennsylvania Conference for Women
The newsmaker of the week is Safehouse. Former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, who is on the nonprofit's Board of Directors, discusses the organization's decision to bypass community engagement in its effort to open a safe injection site. He discusses the next steps in their quest to use the method of safe injection to prevent opioid overdoses. 
The Patriot Homecare Changemaker is Vision 2020, a coalition of women's groups dedicated to gender equality. Program director Joyce Lewandowski discusses the rollout of "Seat at the Table," a new exhibit at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, as well as programming focused on celebrating the centennial of the 19th Amendment. 
Joyce Lewandowski, program director of Vision 2020.
Allie Amato/KYW Newsradio

Flashpoint airs every Saturday at 9:30 p.m. and Sunday at 8:30 a.m. on 1060AM. It also airs at 5 a.m. Sundays on B101FM and WPHT 1210AM and at 6 a.m. on WOGL 98.1 and TDY 96.5. 
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Related: Safehouse voluntarily delays opening of South Philadelphia safe injection site