This is where 10 new needle bins will be installed in Peterborough

New drugs needle disposal boxes are being installed in locations across Peterborough to help crackdown on discarded drugs paraphernalia.

Thursday, 12th September 2019, 10:57 am
Needles previously found in Central Park

Peterborough City Council has been actively working alongside a number of organisations including drugs support group Aspire, Cambridgeshire Police and local campaigners ‘Needless Needles’ as part of a special task group to tackle the issue.

Last year the group was successful in bidding to the Office of the Cambridgeshire Police and Crime Commissioner for ten boxes, which are designed to encourage people to safely dispose of needles, syringes and other drugs equipment.

The boxes, which are marked with stickers stating ‘sharps disposal’, have been installed in the following locations based on past data for needle find areas in the city.

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The bins will be placed at:

Bourges Boulevard underpass

Stanley Recreation Ground

Broadway Cemetery (x2)

North Bank Road / Carr Road underpass

ASDA south bank

Wharf Road cycle path

Dickens Street cycle path

Morris Street cycle path (Wellington Street end)

Kesteven Walk

Councillor Irene Walsh, Peterborough City Council’s cabinet holder for communities, said: “Discarded needles are not an uncommon sight in many towns and cities in the UK. So this is not a problem unique to Peterborough, but we want to do everything within our power to protect the health and safety of the public.

“The task group have listened to concerns from residents and partner groups and are confident that the new needle boxes will make a positive difference. We would encourage users to make use of them and ask members of the public to continue to report any finds.”

To help make people aware of how to report needle finds and who they need to contact for this, the task group has also produced new reporting cards which list contact numbers.

The cards are being handed out to venues across the city including community groups, housing associations, doctor’s surgeries, sports clubs and police stations.

The idea stems from a similar card produced by Ipswich Borough Council, which has helped raise awareness of discarded needles there. The task group spent time working with the council and paid a visit to Ipswich to see how the issue has been tackled there.

Councillor Walsh added: “Please look out for these cards and make others aware of them. We want to make as many people as possible aware of how to correctly report needle finds.”

The task group has also worked with local pharmacies to deliver a needle exchange programme encouraging drug users to return needles and officers have visited 26 primary schools to talk to youngsters about the dangers of playing with discarded needles.

While residents are encouraged to report any needle finds to the council, people should never attempt to pick up any drugs paraphernalia that they find.

Anyone who finds discarded drugs equipment in Peterborough can report it by calling 01733 747474, online at www.peterborough.gov.uk