Needle Clean-Up Kits, Opioid Resource Portal Now Available in Snohomish County
Expanded efforts part of ongoing response to opioid epidemic
SNOHOMISH COUNTY, Wash. – Residents and businesses in Snohomish County now have a simpler and safer way to participate in needle clean-up efforts. Starting Wednesday, free kits and needle disposal are available to residents and business owners cleaning up needles found in the community. The kits (see attached image) include a sharps container, puncture-resistant gloves, safety glasses, tongs, hand sanitizer and simple instructions for safe collection, and can be picked up from the Snohomish Health District at 3020 Rucker Avenue in Everett during normal business hours.
Used needles left in public and private places are both a nuisance and potential safety concern. Whether they’re used to inject medicines like insulin or for illegal drugs, used needles can spread diseases like Hepatitis C through accidental needle pokes. While the risk of contracting a disease from a needle-stick injury is very low, you can further reduce that risk by using the right equipment and procedures. In addition to the kits, the Snohomish Health District and City of Everett have developed a short video on how to safely collect and dispose of used needles.
VIDEO: What to do when you find a needle
As a reminder, it is unlawful to dispose of needles in solid waste containers in Snohomish County. In addition to free clean-up kits, approved sharps containers can also be returned to the Health District’s Everett location during normal business hours. Please note that milk jugs, soda bottles and tin cans are not accepted sharps containers.
This program is intended for residents and business owners cleaning up used needles found in the community, not for businesses that generate used needles. Individuals using insulin shots or other similar uses should dispose of their used needles in sharps containers provided by local pharmacies or clinics.
More details about pick-up and drop-off of the kits can be found at www.snohomishoverdoseprevention.com/clean-up/. The main site is a new information and resource portal available in Snohomish County. The website—and accompanying social media accounts—were developed to be a one-stop shop for resources. Whether trying to understand the problem, prevent addiction, or save a life, this is a place to find information for that first next step. New content and resources will continue to be adding on an ongoing basis.
Treatment providers and support services not currently listed on the site are encouraged to visit www.snohomishoverdoseprevention.com/contact-us/ for instructions on how to submit their information.
The City of Everett's comprehensive Safe Streets plan uses outreach and enforcement, supportive housing and diversion programs to address issues of homelessness, mental illness, crime and addiction. Learn more at www.everettwa.gov/safestreets.
The Snohomish Health District works for a safer and healthier community through disease prevention, health promotion, and protection from environmental threats. To read more about the District and for important health information, visit www.snohd.org.