Councils may lose right to veto needle exchanges

Local councils can currently block plans to set up needle exchanges, but now Sweden's red-green government wants to take away that power.

Four health authorities want to set up needle exchanges, and another four are discussing it. But currently this can be blocked by the local municipality where the new facility would be set up.

For example, the Västra Götaland health authority, run by a centre-right-green coalition, wanted to set up a clinic in Göteborg, but the city's centre-left council said no, reports SVT.

Swedish drug policy has long been aimed at eradication of illegal use, but now more health authorities support needle exchanges as a form of harm reduction.