Wigan mum calls for drugs crackdown after children find needles in the streets

A furious Wigan mum is calling for an urgent crackdown on illegal substance use after her primary school-aged children found needles and saw addicts taking drugs.

Friday, 21st June 2019, 11:15 am
The abandoned needle

Louise Murphy says not enough is being done to crack down on the problems of addiction in Scholes, particularly around St Catharine’s Church.

She spoke out after her young son Harley saw someone injecting in the doorway of the place of worship a few weeks after her elder daughter Holly found a hypodermic needle in the street.

She says her neighbours have also found drug paraphernalia in the area around Lorne Street and Leader Street as well as a knife abandoned on a patch of grassland.

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It is the second time in a few days drug use in a prominent public place has hit the headlines after shocking video footage of people in a zombie-like state in Wigan town centre was posted on social media, drawing hundreds of comments from alarmed residents.

Louise, 35, said: “My son saw this guy who had the lid to the needle in his mouth, so was either just injecting or had injected.

“He’s so innocent he walked up to him and asked him what he was doing.

“My daughter also found a needle with no lid on it.

“She’s 10 and old enough to know not to pick something like that up but my little boy wouldn’t.

“My neighbour also found another one about three days later. It’s just absolutely ridiculous.

“It seems like no-one is bothered or cares.

“It’s always happening around the church.

“The guy my son saw wasn’t even round the corner: he was just right there in the doorway. It’s disgusting.

“It seems to me people just think it’s the norm round here.

“When my son went up to that guy I just saw red.

“That’s the last straw for me. Enough’s enough.

“I don’t know what needs to be done, to be honest, but if there were more PCSOs coming round they could act if they saw something like that.”

Louise said she is particularly concerned about the amount of drug use going on with a primary school so near at hand and she intends to speak to ward councillors about the problems.

She says the issues with discovering drug paraphernalia and seeing people under the influence of illegal substances on the streets have been getting worse over the past month or so.

Wigan Council said any needles should be immediately reported to the local authority either using the Report It app or on the website at www.wigan.gov.uk/reportit

Addaction are also on hand to offer support for people with drug or alcohol issues and can be contacted on 01942 487578.

Police say they are cracking down on drug use in Wigan following a disturbing video footage being posted online of several men in the town centre clearly under the influence of illegal substances, and residents can expect to see more officers and PCSOs on the streets during the Safe4Summer operation.

Local councillor George Davies has also been campaigning to clear up dumped needles elsewhere in Scholes.