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Ourage after council refuse to clear used needles

PUBLISHED: 15:56 14 July 2010 | UPDATED: 11:48 23 August 2010

A MUM slammed council staff after being told to go elsewhere to report used needles on a public footpath she found while out with her two-year-old son. Stefani Ernst, 24, from Northfleet, discovered the needles and a small metal measuring spoon — parapher

A MUM slammed council staff after being told to go elsewhere to report used needles on a public footpath she found while out with her two-year-old son.

Stefani Ernst, 24, from Northfleet, discovered the needles and a small metal measuring spoon - paraphernalia used in drug use - while walking with her son Finley Giles on Monday evening and reported the matter the next day.

She said: "Initially they were very helpful. Then later they called to say they are not going to do anything, ring Dartford Borough Council. It's as if they want me running around doing their job."

The footpath, off the A226, leads to a pedestrian bridge over the railway tracks and is officially the jurisdiction of Dartford Borough Council

"It is right on the border with Swanscombe so apparently it is not their business. I couldn't believe it

"I am so angry. I just want a nice area. I dream of this little nice town where I can bring him up. It shouldn't matter whether it is on the border or not, we should all want the same thing," she added.

Gravesham Borough Council has apologised for the response after contacted by the Reporter and has since made contact with Dartford Borough Council to arrange a clear-up.

A spokesman said: "Gravesham Borough Council apologises for this slip up. Of course, when this sort of report is made, the council usually contacts the neighbouring council on the customer's behalf and in this case it was a mistake to ask her to call Dartford council and we are sorry. Our customer services department did, in fact, contact Dartford Borough Council with the information."

Miss Ernst was pleased to hear the needles had eventually been removed.

She said: "I don't want to have a dig at the council but I just worry about this. Finley is too young so probably wouldn't pick it up, but older children might know what it is but not realise the risks. It is so just so dangerous it should be cleared immediately whosever jurisdiction it is.

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