Nearly one month after the City of Melfort and the Melfort Fire Department released information on the danger of disposed needles, council gave administration direction to evaluate the idea of safe needle drop off points.
The idea was brought up during the Nov. 5 council meeting, where the city fire report showed five needle pickup incidents in the month of October, compared to no other incidents listed from January to September.
Mayor Rick Lang said Melfort is a big enough city where needle drop off points is something council must consider.
“As your population grows there are challenges that come with it,” Lang said. “This appears to be a challenge that’s developing, and we could stick our heads in the sand and ignore it or we can try to address it.”
Lang also said direction was also given to Coun. Glen George, who is director of the northeast region on the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA), to see if SUMA can be involved in some way.
People who don’t feel comfortable with touching disposed needles in public can call the non-emergency 9-1-1 dispatch at 306-953-4284 to have a fire department member retrieve and properly dispose of it.
Melfort Fire Chief Jason Everitt told northeastNOW anyone who feels comfortable with removing a disposed needle should have safety gloves or tongs to pick the needle up by the barrel, not the point. Everitt also said not to try and put a cap on the needle if there isn’t one on.
Anyone disposing a needle is asked to place it in a sharps container and not in the garbage or recycling.
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