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Infographic: Needles in Greater Sudbury by the numbers

Harm reduction supply distribution increased between 2016 and 2018 -- here's how many needles get returned

Updated 7:30 p.m.: An earlier version of this story stated that 12,889 used needles were picked up by Sudbury Action Centre for Youth within the first three months of conducting this service. That many were picked up within SACY's first month of collection services.

How many needles are being distributed in the city, and how many are being disposed of safely?

Much is being done to address the issue, in the form of municipal funding and partnerships between community service providers.

In 2017, the City of Greater Sudbury took responsibility for four syringe recovery bins.

The pick up and disposal costs become part of the city's budget as these are located on city property. In 2018, three additional bins will be added to the base budget.

When residents find discarded syringes in the city, they should call 311 and Greater Sudbury will make arrangements to have them removed.

Although used syringes can be picked up by the Toxic Taxi or discarded at approved pharmacies, as well as community service centres, not all needles make it to bins or locations. 

Between November 2017 and January 2018, Sudbury Action Centre for Youth's (SACY) Blue Coat Harm Reduction Team picked up 17,100 discarded needles. The organization began collecting the hazardous waste in November 2017, and is supported by municipal funding.

Here's a look at the numbers: 



Group picked up almost 13,000 used needles last November in Sudbury

Public Health's needle exchange handed out 1.2 million needles in 2017

Greater Sudbury 2018 Budget


Allana McDougall

About the Author: Allana McDougall

Allana McDougall is a new media reporter at Northern Life.
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