Health and Community Services
January 25, 2019

Provincial Government and City of St. John’s Fund Sharps Containers for Safe Needle Disposal

The Department of Health and Community Services, in conjunction with the City of St. John’s and the St. John’s Community Action Group on Harm Reduction, have increased the number of metal sharps boxes throughout the city, as part of a harm reduction initiative launched in June 2018. The main intent of these metal sharps boxes is to divert the disposal of used needles from city grounds, thus enhancing public safety.

Ten new sharps boxes have been placed in the following locations:

  • Airport Heights gazebo
  • Southlands Community Centre
  • Mundy Pond
  • Newfoundland and Labrador Sports Centre
  • Wishingwell Park
  • Bannerman Park Visitor’s Service Building
  • Empire Avenue off Jensen Camp Road
  • Shea Heights Ballfield
  • Buckmaster’s Circle Community Centre
  • Tessier Place

Public buildings such as airports and institutions commonly have sharps boxes available in restrooms for users of injection drugs, including insulin-dependent diabetics. In June 2018, two large metal sharps kiosks were placed at Quidi Vidi Lake and Victoria Park.

Other communities in the province have begun similar initiatives with the hope that more will follow suit.

Quotes
“Proper needle disposal is a public health and safety issue commonly overlooked. Sometimes discarded needles are found in public areas which can lead to injury or the spread of infectious disease. Safe disposal in containers such as sharps boxes helps protect the public from undue harm.”
Honourable John Haggie
Minister of Health and Community Services

“These 10 new outdoor sharps disposal units, installed throughout our city, will help keep our communities safer. This initiative is the result of collaborative partnership between the province, the city and community organizations closest to issues of harm reduction. I would like to thank all involved for helping see this next phase of our work come to completion.”
Hope Jamieson
Councillor, Ward 2, City of St. John’s

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Learn more

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Media contacts
Kathy Dicks-Peyton
Health and Community Services
709-729-6986, 699-1982
KathyDicksPeyton@gov.nl.ca

Kelly Maguire
Media Relations
City of St. John's
709-576-8491
kmaguire@stjohns.ca 

2019 01 25                              2:45 p.m.