Pubdate: Thu, 22 Aug 2002
Source: Goldstream Gazette (CN BC)
Copyright: 2002 Goldstream Gazette
Author: Andrew Topf


A nurse at the public health unit in Langford displays the kind of syringe 
sometimes discarded by drug users.

Needles discarded by drug users are typically a big-city problem. But a 
needle discovered by a Langford resident is evidence the Western 
Communities are not immune from such concerns.

Cindy Hesse said that last Wednesday, one of the kids in the neighbourhood 
came across a needle full of fluid lying on her front lawn on Strathmore Road.

Luckily, the child wasn't stuck by the needle.

But Hesse said she wanted to contact the News Gazette to alert parents to 
the danger of needles that may carry hepatitis, HIV, or other diseases. 'I 
just think it's something parents need to be aware of,' she said.

Hesse said that when she called police to report the problem, she was told 
the police find needles all the time.

But a spokesman for the West Shore RCMP said police do not receive a lot of 
calls about discarded needles.

'It isn't a problem in the West Shore communities,' said RCMP Cpl. Richard 
Boyle. 'It's more of a downtown issue.' Boyle said that if someone finds a 
needle, they should call the police, who will pick it up and destroy it. 
Some tips on what to do if you find a needle: - Treat with care - Assume 
it's dirty - Do not bend or break it - Do not recap it

What do I do? - Pick it up with work gloves, tongs or tweezers - Hold 
needle pointing away from you

Where do I put it? - Place in metal or heavy plastic container with a lid - 
Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water

If there has been a needle stick injury, go to the closest hospital 
emergency within two hours or as soon as possible. For further directions 
Phone 388-2220.
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