Community members worry for safety of pets, children over used needles scattered across South Bronx park

The Parks Department says that over 6,000 needles have been removed from St. Mary’s Park in 2024.

Valerie Ryan

Apr 12, 2024, 9:28 PM

Updated 37 days ago

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Used needles can be seen scattered across St. Mary’s Park in the South Bronx, and residents are calling for change.
Residents spoke with News 12 and say that their worries for the safety of their pets and children is at an all-time high.
“It’s hard to walk my dog safely because sometimes I let him off the leash, but you can’t do none of that,” said local resident Adrieo Reyes.
In a recent town hall, the commanding officer of the NYPD’s 40th Precinct, Joseph G. Tompkins, said that the high volume of syringes can be attributed to the 27 methadone clinics that are a short walk away from the park.
“I understand they are giving away free needles so they can be clean needles when they do use it, but at the same time, we suffer the aftermath because they just drop them off here anyway,” said another concerned resident.
The Parks Department says that over 6,000 needles have been removed from St. Mary’s Park in 2024, but people in the neighborhood think more than cleanup needs to be done.


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