City Vice

This is a piece I’m working on for submission to Urban Graffiti 11, a magazine based in Edmonton. The theme this issue is Vice and I thought this picture fit the bill nicely.

One benefit of working in the Byward Market is that I can bring my camera out with me at lunch and be pretty much guaranteed to come across something interesting to shoot. Last week however I came across something more sinister than usual.

The bathrooms in the central market area have safe disposal sites for hypodermic needles, a good idea except when they’re in this state. I was kind of shocked when I found that the staff were fully aware of the situation and were waiting on Hazmat to show up and dispose of the overflowing container. They hadn’t thought to cordon off the stall, or lock the bathroom containing said container, however… something that might have been prudent due to the hundreds of tourists, children and anyone else wandering the area and using the bathroom. This was a terrible accident waiting to happen.

I’m thinking of sending this picture around to a few local newspapers as well. The Market is a huge tourist draw for Ottawa and a situation like this is completely unacceptable… and one picture can tell the story better than I ever will be able to.

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