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Council workers remove piles of syringes from tent used by rough sleepers in Norwich city centre

PUBLISHED: 08:12 18 May 2018 | UPDATED: 09:53 24 May 2018

Workers removed piles of used and unused syringes from the tent on Brigg Street Picture: June Blythe

Workers removed piles of used and unused syringes from the tent on Brigg Street Picture: June Blythe

June Blythe

Council workers today removed piles of used syringes from a tent used by rough sleepers in Norwich city centre.

Workers removed piles of syringes from the tent on Brigg Street, Norwich Picture: June BlytheWorkers removed piles of syringes from the tent on Brigg Street, Norwich Picture: June Blythe

Workers from Norwich Norse on behalf of Norwich City Council spent around an hour clearing the tent in the doorway of the disused Fix Coffee premises on Brigg Street at around 4pm, which had been left full of used and open syringes, bottles of urine and unopened condom packets by its homeless occupants.

Shopper June Blythe, 71, believed that she had seen the tent there for around two months.

“I had seen movement in the tent but unless you see what is going on inside for yourself you have no idea what is happening in that tent,” she said.

The black boxes that the syringes came in, which are intended to be disposed of once they are used to prevent contamination by reuse, were also left scattered across the tent.

Pharmacies across the Norwich area offer a needle exchange facility. A spokesman from Change Grow Live, which offers counselling for adults affected by drug and alcohol abuse, confirmed that the charity also offer the service at their Norwich site, and that their staff are trained to follow-up in cases where the injecting equipment is not returned.

Staff from Pret A Manger, which is located a few doors down from where the tent was located, provided free hot drinks for the council workers as they shovelled piles of what remained in the tent into a yellow box marked ‘medicinal sharps’.


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