What to do if you find a discarded needle and how to remove it
Use gloves and tongs or pliers to pick up needles, Ottawa Public Health says
Spring cleaning is underway and the city's public health department is taking the opportunity to remind people about what to do if they find discarded needles outside.
Being poked by a dirty needle can cause infection or disease, so Ottawa Public Health wants people to know how to safely dispose of them.
Anne Stanton-Loucks, a public health inspector, says it's best to use gloves and tongs or pliers to pick up needles, and to put them needle-side down into bottles or other hard containers.
It's against the law to dispose of sharp objects, such as needles and syringes, in the garbage, recycling or by flushing them down the toilet.
Instead, the city wants residents to take needles to one of 65 needle drop boxes throughout the city, or to select pharmacies, household hazardous waste depots or retailers that accept returns of household hazardous materials.
If there's a needle or anything else you don't feel is safe to pick up, you can also call the city at 311 to dispatch someone to remove it.
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