Spring has arrived and Algoma Public Health and the City of Sault Ste. Marie would like to remind residents to be careful if they come across needles on the ground.
For the most part, people who use needles take steps to dispose of them properly. If needles are found on public property, citizens may call the Public Works and Engineering Department at 705-759-5201 to arrange for pickup and proper disposal by City staff.
“Sharps (needles) may pose a risk of physical harm or serious blood borne infections if handled inappropriately, said Jon Bouma, manager of Infectious Diseases at Algoma Public Health. “It is important to pick up and dispose of them properly.”
“If you find a needle on your property, use a pair of tongs, pliers or tweezers to pick up the needle with the needle pointing down and away from you. Place the needle in a hard plastic container, like a coffee container or water bottle that you can close tightly.”
These containers can be dropped off at a needle drop bin located:
- outside the John Howard Society
- corner of Gore/Albert Street
- outside the Soup Kitchen (172 James Street)
- outside the City Bus Terminal (160 Queen Street)
- outside Algoma Public Health (294 Willow Avenue)
These bins help with safe needle disposal, divert sharps away from the city landfill and help protect public works staff who handle garbage.
In addition, needle containers can be dropped off at the Household Hazardous Waste Facility at 402 Fifth Line East when it opens on April 6, 2021.
Algoma Public Health also runs a needle exchange program that helps to reduce the spread of infectious diseases. The program is available Monday to Friday 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. at the Canadian Mental Health Association at 386 Queen Street.