Two Syringe Disposal Kiosks Installed in Eureka

Press release from the Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services:

Two syringe disposal kiosks have been installed in Eureka, and a third is on its way. The kiosks, purchased by the Humboldt County Department of Health & Human Services (DHHS), are intended to provide a safe and convenient location to dispose of used syringes.

The kiosks are located at the main Public Health and Social Services buildings A third one is scheduled to be installed at the main Mental Health location soon.

“The kiosks were purchased in response to community members and partner organizations expressing concern about syringe litter, and asking for a place to dispose of used needles,” said Dana Murguia, a senior program manager with DHHS’s Healthy Communities Division.

The disposal bins are part of the department’s Syringe Services Program (SSP), which provides needle exchange, information about overdose prevention, referrals to treatment programs and other services.

“Syringe exchange is an important component of an SSP,” said Michele Stephens, DHHS Public Health director. “It helps reduce the incidence of new HIV and viral hepatitis infections by decreasing the number of people sharing syringes and other injection equipment.”

DHHS Director Connie Beck said, “Needle exchange is a proven harm reduction strategy which increases entry into treatment and reduces overdose deaths. What we want to do now is make sure we’re reducing the risk of harm to all county residents.”

Beck added, “The volume of needle litter in Eureka is unacceptable. DHHS has been working with its partners to reduce it, and is committed to continuing to do so.” She added that conversations about reducing needle litter are taking place in other communities.

The new kiosks are located at 529 I St. and 929 Koster St. Small sharps containers are available at each location’s front desk during normal business hours.

Humboldt Waste Management Authority also accepts sharps in appropriate containers and will dispose of them free of charge. For a list of drop-off locations, visit

People who find needles within Eureka city limits that they are unable to collect or dispose of can report them to Eureka Police Department’s non-emergency phone number at 707-441-4044.

For more information, contact Public Health at 707-445-6200.



  • If “safe injection sites” were the only place to get syringes, I might be for them. Then the needles would be dealt with properly and addicts would have exposure to treatment options.
    At the very least we need a “bounty” on syringes. One for one replacement as well. Anything else is enablement.

    • Agree. If used needles are such a health risk (and they are), it is a horrible policy when hundreds of thousands of them are given away for free to addicts and then discarded in public where children, pets and non-addicts are put at risk. And these disposal bins will have little affect…it’s just not in the nature of addicts to care about public health.

    • “The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”
      Dr. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

      I’m all for enabling life. You just don’t know what kinda butterfly may emerge from their cocoon.

  • At least I will have a convenient place to drop off the used syringes from treating my animals. I wonder what they will think about the 32 cc ones…

    • I know! Every time I try to take a horse syringe to our local doctors office, they try to not take them and tell me to just put them in the garbage. I then have to guilt trip them into accepting them, explaining that if I was the garbage employee that got stuck by one I would be freaked out. It is not just drug addicts that need safe disposal sites.

  • What does this say about our county. That there is a, huge ,huge ,huge ,huge drug problem here ,and the powers that be need to crack down on the drug pushers .Oh buy the way very funny Mr guest .

  • “What we want to do now is make sure we’re reducing the risk of harm to all county residents.”

  • Some degenerate came into the hospital in Fort Bragg several years ago with a raging infection in his arm. Seems he`d shot up with a football inflating needle and got an infection from it. I wonder how he sharpened it?

  • Instead of trying to help addicts and keep them from killing themselves we take the easy route and give them all the free needles they want with no rules and then pick up after them. Shame on us.

  • Good i hope they use it because im sick of finding a sh*t load of needles by my car on 6th st. everyday..ugh

  • Cool free drugs and free healthcare after I destroy my body with these awesome drugs, just gets better and better

  • JustWantToHeartheEndoftheStory

    So druggies who have no concern for the welfare of others will suddenly be compelled to put their debris into containers? If it’s more than six inches from where they shoot up, I doubt it.

  • PAY for used needles.

  • It is my opinion that we should start a track and trace program with the syringes, making it a felony if they are found out in the world.

    • White Powerstroke

      I like!

    • Since they are mainly made in India, how exactly will this be done? Other countries dont have or dont care about our problems, and wont reduce their profit ot increase their costs to do something for one country…

    • Great idea! More people in jail than any other country per capita as well as absolute numbers and you think another unenforcable law will solve anything. Isn`t selling or possessing drugs already a crime? How`s that one been working out?

      Around here I probably have 30 or more syringes and needles and have never used drugs and don`t intend to. Why do I have them? Injecting glue into tight places; washing out tiny drilled holes; getting oil into difficult places in precision mechanisms. I understand farmers regularly use syringes and needles since I get mine from the farm & dairy supply. Generate another layer of bureaucracy? Great idea, there Einstein!

  • We need to stop accepting bad behaviour as the new normal

    These things are a joke and a huge waste of money. Address the real problem, which is needles being handed out like candy to addicts who are so sick they don’t give a shit about themselves let alone anyone else. Institute a true one-for-one exchange and the problem will disappear almost immediately.

    Instead, the needle pushers will give out hundreds of thousands of them, not caring if they endanger the non-addict population in the process. If the needle pushers don’t immediately reform their crazy practices they, should be shut down and charged with public endangerment if they continue.

  • We put porta potties out for them, they melted them to the ground 3 times. We put dog poop cleanup bag dispensers out for them, they melted those, too. Betty Chinn gives her all for them, they break in to her storage, steal and poop on her floor…we gave them parking lots to camp in, they turned them into stolen bike stores and drug party stops full of 3 different free meal places now,at least that many places to sleep….How much more is Eureka going to give??

  • Double speak outside of cheek

    Understand everyone that you can’t find a needle on the street and place them in these needle kiosks. Not at all. The needle has to be first placed in a smaller sharps containers to be placed in this bigger sharps container. See anything wrong with this picture? Unless you carry a smaller sharps container, I mean shucks who doesn’t, these kiosks are completely useless. What we need is people on every street corner handing out small sharps containers as free gifts to everyone, especially tourists, who come to the area. What a joke. But I’m sure the small portion of people involved in getting these placed are patting themselves on the back. How much of a grant was received to get these DHHS? They don’t seem to do anything without the all mighty tax dollar funneling into their office to give a little bump of incentive. It is to laugh!

    • Agree with Double speak. I will add that the DHHS budget is the largest budget item for the County. I don’t recall the actual amount but believe it to be multiple millions of dollars. A huge amount of positions in that department all related to services for the homeless, druggies, mental health, etc. folks out there. Unfortunately, the programs, as pointed out above, do not have a corresponding accountability. Whether it be returning used syringes for new ones, or doing something for the money, housing, food they received day in and day out.

      If all we are talking about is support/programs for these folks, which equates to money, (our taxpayer money) but nothing comes back into the system then the system will eventually break. We need them to do service work, such as pick up trash, paint curbs, pull weeds, etc. in order to receive the assistance.

      It is simple but we wont or cant do it. Not going to work or instill the type of ethics we need long term.

  • Drugs are bad, mkay.

  • I doubt those kiosks will be used much. They’ll probably get filled up with dog poop and trash. It’s unlikely anyone shooting up is going to pick up their needle and walk to the nearest kiosk to deposit their needles; they’ll drop them on the ground like they do now. Wishful thinking by our armchair decision-makers.

  • >”At the very least we need a “bounty” on syringes”

    Yup. Set up a couple locations… and offer $.10 (or so) for ’em.
    I don’t think drug addicts will bring them in… unless you traded them for a new needle.


    ??UMMM again government is the problem???

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