Current Fellows
Addiction & Overdose

Melanie Racine

Current Fellow

Melanie Racine is the Director of Special Projects at Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program (BHCHP). In this role, she is responsible for strategic planning, grants management, program implementation and evaluation for a range of initiatives that improve community health, confront stigma, and advance social justice. Drug overdose is the leading cause of death among people experiencing homelessness in Boston. Through legislative testimony, narrative essays, and research, Melanie has shaped BHCHP’s policy advocacy at a city, state, and federal level in support of supervised consumption, expanded syringe access, and removal of barriers to medication for addiction treatment. Her interests are in mental health, addiction, and the practice, history, and power of community health.  

Founded in 1985, Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program is a federally qualified health center whose mission is to ensure unconditionally equitable and dignified access to the highest quality health care for all individuals and families experiencing homelessness in the greater Boston area. The program operates an extensive network of clinics within homeless shelters, soup kitchens, hospitals, the street, and other settings where people are trying to meet basic survival needs. Over half of patients at BHCHP have a diagnosed substance use disorder. BHCHP seeks to expand on-demand access to all types of addiction treatment and harm reduction services, with overarching aims to stop overdose deaths and end stigma.   

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