Hundreds pack community center to voice concerns over proposed safe injection site

Kimberly Adams
April 04, 2019 - 10:01 pm
Close to 200 people, many of whom were residents concerned about their safety, packed a community center in Port Richmond to voice concerns about a proposed safe injection site in their community.

Kimberly Adams/KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Close to 200 people - many were residents concerned about their safety - packed a community center in Port Richmond to voice concerns about a proposed safe injection site in their community. 

"I'm against it because my house is right on the same street, so I see all the activity all the time," said Kensington resident Maria Perez.

Perez joined hundreds of her neighbors who got a chance to let nonprofit Safehouse know how they feel about a proposed safe injection site at Kensington and Allegheny avenues. 

One of Perez's concerns were about young children in the area. 

"The children go by the neighborhood at 10 in the morning to walk around, so they will not be able to do this," she said.

Resident Francine Dennis agrees. 

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"I think it's going to cause a lot of problems. I think it's going to put a lot people in danger," Dennis said.  

But Safehouse volunteer Jose Benitiz says the plan could save lives.

"Bringing some the activity of public use indoors," Benitiz said. 

Councilwoman Maria Quinones-Sanchez says there's still a long way to go. 

"We're all in new territory about how we define this site and what illegal activity will be happening inside," she said. 

More meetings will be held in the future.