Yates County: Take back your unused drugs

Yates County Sheriff Ron Spike announces that his agency will participate with the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) in a prescription drug “Take-Back” initiative to collect expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs for destruction on Saturday, September 25, 2010 from 10:00 AM to 2:00PM at the rear of the Yates County Court House at 415 Liberty Street, Penn Yan, NY. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked. “This partnership with DEA is important to our Yates County community as we are seeking to prevent increased pill abuse and theft, while addressing a vital public safety, public health and environmental issue,” said Sheriff Spike, “Many homes have medicine that languish in cupboards and drawers, and unfortunately can be susceptible to theft, abuse, and misuse.” According to the DEA rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are increasing at alarming rates, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, many Americans do not know how to properly dispose of their unused medicine, often flushing them down the toilet or throwing them away, and pharmacy’s cannot take them back. They can be both potentially a safety and health hazard.Prescription drug abuse is the fasted growing drug problem not only nationwide, but locally as well according to the Sheriff citing local police and sheriff’s investigators are spending more and more time on these types of controlled substances. The misuse of narcotic opiates like Vicodin, Percocet, OxyContin, and codeine cough syrup, along with stimulants and some prescribed sedatives are a growing problem. “The DEA is making a nationwide effort and we are glad to partner with them,” said Spike. “Simply flushing drugs down the toilet can be an environmental hazard – we are hopeful that folks will bring us their old unwanted and potentially harmful drugs, and the DEA will properly dispose of them.”

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