Sue Purchase believes that by making drug use safer we can mitigate overdose, death by overdose, and the spread of AIDS, Hep C, and other blood-borne illnesses. She is passionate about recognizing and addressing the disparities in services that exist for people who use drugs, especially women and people of color. Sue has twenty plus years’ experience in harm reduction.
Her expertise encompasses strategic planning, capacity building, organizational development, and outreach as indicated by her accomplishments: she created the first comprehensive harm reduction program with a syringe exchange, Women With a Point-Access Works in Minneapolis, Minnesota; she was instrumental in the day to day operations of the first needle exchange program in Tacoma, Washington; she was the founding board chairperson of Project Safe in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and she established a syringe access program in the rural mountain area of Clear Creek County, Colorado. Sue spent time as an operations manager in North Carolina helping to develop and implement harm reduction programs before returning to her home state of Minnesota.
She is currently building Harm Reduction Sisters (HRS), a nonprofit dedicated to serving the needs of people using drugs in rural Northeastern MN. HRS currently offers mobile syringe access and Narcan distribution throughout St. Louis and Carlton counties--the counties with the highest racial disparity of overdose and HIV/Hep C infection in the state.
Peer Navigator & HIV Tester
Linkage To Care Coordinator