Decatur police sponsor drug take-back at Presbyterian Towers
From The Decatur Daily
by Anna Beahm
Handing over prescription drugs to law enforcement usually only happens just before ducking into a police car, but today the Decatur Police Department is giving the public a chance to safely dispose of any unwanted prescription drugs.
Police will be at Presbyterian Towers at 1824 Presbyterian Drive S.W. from 1 to 2 p.m. today collecting unwanted prescription drugs, officials said.
This drug take-back was requested by Presbyterian Towers managers because residents’ prescriptions were accumulating, but anyone is allowed to turn in drugs, Decatur police public information liaison Emily Long said.
The department participates in two Drug Enforcement Agency-sponsored take-backs each year, police said. Long said the last one was at the end of April, and the department will have another one during the fall.
“The (police department) is interested in collecting controlled substances that community members have a tendency to stockpile,” Long said.
A 2011 study by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration found 70 percent of people who abuse prescription drugs got them from a friend or a family member. Additionally, twice as many Americans abuse prescription drugs as abuse cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin and inhalants combined, the study shows.
No questions will be asked about the drugs’ origin when they are dropped off, Long said.
Another reason for the take-back is to properly dispose of the drugs, she said.
“In many cases, residents will flush the contents of their prescription bottle down the toilet. We know now that many substances can’t be filtered properly in the wastewater treatment process,” Long said.
After collection, police will incinerate the drugs, she said.
Pills, tablets, capsules and liquid medicines will be accepted, city officials said. Liquids should be in their original containers.
Any injectable solutions and syringes will not be accepted.