Thousands Of Dirty Syringes Are Ending Up On The Streets And Parks Of San Francisco
To address the problem, San Francisco Mayor Farrell has hired 10 workers whose sole job will be to pick up needles starting in June. The city has no plans on changing its program that hands out free needles. "Research shows that reducing access to clean syringes increases disease and does not improve the problem of needle litter," said Barbara Garcia, director of the Department of Public Health.
The Associated Press:
San Francisco's Many Free Syringes Are Littering Its Streets
San Francisco hands out millions of syringes a year to drug users but has little control over how they are discarded and that's contributing to thousands of complaints. The city distributes an estimated 400,000 syringes each month through various programs aimed at reducing HIV and other health risks for drug users. About 246,000 syringes are discarded through the city's 13 syringe access and disposal sites. But thousands of the others end up on streets, in parks and other public areas, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Thursday. (5/10)
In other news on the crisis —
Top State Lawmaker: California Prisons Must Do More To Reduce Inmate Drug Overdoses
California prison officials need to find new ways to prevent illegal opioid drugs from entering the prison system, according to the lawmaker who runs the state legislative committee that oversees the state's correctional system. State Sen. Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley), who chairs the Senate's Public Safety Committee, says she wants the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) to explain what it's doing to reduce inmate overdoses. (Goldberg, 5/10)