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East of England Liberal Democrats

Mapping Drug Use in Ipswich

January 12, 2018 12:42 PM
Originally published by Ipswich Liberal Democrats

It has to be acknowledged that Ipswich, in common with many urban centres, has a problem with Class A drug addiction. The recent University of Suffolk research into drugs and gangs estimated that there were approximately 750 people in the Town who were addicted to heroin. Inevitably, this amount of usage leads to serious problems for many residents concerning the supply of these drugs but another detrimental effect is the discarding of drugs paraphernalia in many parts of the town. Many addicts inject the drug and then often casually discard the needles creating a serious public health issue. Although Ipswich Borough Council provides sharps bins in high usage areas, many public spaces are littered with potentially harmful needles. Cllr. Oliver Holmes comments: "At recent public meetings, councillors have been told by a number of churchs and schools of used needles being found on or near their premises. St Mary le Tower reported that they had started to find discarded bubble packs for knives as well." It is vital that not only properly trained and equipped teams deal safely with this litter but it also recorded so that the Council and other stakeholders can map the areas affected in order to coordinate their response. As Oliver says: "Sadly, my ward of St Margaret's has the most recorded sharps finds in the town. If residents, community groups or businesses find needles on their premises, they need to contact the Cleaner Ipswich Hotline on 01473 433000. All sharps finds are discussed at Neighbourhood Partnership Groups which meet monthly. The information can help the Police and the Council plan operations to stop or curb this usage to the benefit of residents."

Sharps Disposal