Children at a Woonona childcare centre have had a lesson in needlestick injuries after used syringes were found dumped in a nearby park.
“Obviously some people do have their drug problems but I think it’s no great effort to take them with you and dispose of them properly.”Jamie Nipperess
Father-of-five Jamie Nipperess found four needles inside a public gazebo at a park off Gray Street on Monday, including two syringes which had their caps removed.
Alerts were issued at area schools, including at the Tiny Tots Early Learning Centre, where children as young as two had visited the neighbouring park recently as part of Clean Up Australia Day.
“To think there could have been a syringe in their hands – that’s scary,” the centre’s education leader, Marina Veleski, told the Mercury on Wednesday.
“What we explained to them this morning is that if they see something like that, not to touch it, and to alert their parents.
“We did a little song: ‘if you see it, do not touch’.”
Mr Nipperess used an old takeaway drink cup to collect the syringes after chancing across them while on his way to collect his son from Woonona Public School on Monday.
He has noticed empty alcohol bottles in the shelter in the past but believes the syringes pose a particular threat to curious children from the preschool, the public school and Woonona High School, where another of his children attends.
“It wan’t a good feeling, knowing a lot of children go to the park there,” he said.
“Usually when they leave school of a day and sometimes before school they will actually play around in that hut.
“Obviously some people do have their drug problems but I think it’s no great effort to take them with you and dispose of them properly.”
Mr Nipperess said he intended to arrange for the appropriate disposal of the syringes.