The City of Windsor is placing sharps containers around the city to help reduce the number of improperly discarded needles. ( photo supplied by City of Windsor )

Windsor city council is being urged to install five more yellow sharps bins around the city to collect needles.

The recommendation was approved Wednesday by the Community Services and Parks Standing Committee.

A report shows at least 44,000 needles have been collected in nine sharps containers between January and July of this year.

The city wouldn't have to pay for the five new bins. They've already been bought by the Windsor-Essex Community Health Centre and donated to the city.

But the city would have to pay to properly dispose of the needles, and the estimated cost is more than $53,000 to cover 15 bins twice a month.

Ward 3 councillor Rino Bortolin feels it's worth it since the needle collection program is far exceeding expectations.

"It is staggering and I think what you're seeing is more and more realization that the drug epidemic that we keep talking about is here," says Bortolin. "It's not going away. It's actually probably growing."

The report also shows more than 200 properties had their garbage pickup temporarily suspended in 2019, while 11 properties had their pickup permanently suspected after needles were found in the garbage on four different occasions.

The recommendation for more bins will go to council in October.