On Saturday, April 27, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Mar-Mac Police District and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration will give the public its 17th opportunity in nine years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted medication.
Unused and unwanted prescription and over-the-counter medication can be brought to the Marquette City Hall, 102 North Street, or to the McGregor Public Library, 334 Main Street, for disposal.
The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked. Last fall, Iowans turned in more than 10,444 pounds of unwanted and unused medication. Nationally, nearly 460 tons (more than 900,000 pounds) of medication was collected at more than 5,800 sites operated by the DEA and almost 4,800 of its state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, in its 16 previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in almost 11 million pounds—nearly 5,500 tons—of pills.
This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health shows year after year that the majority of misused and abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including someone else’s medication being stolen from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards.
For more information about the disposal of medication or about the April 27th Take Back Day event, go to www.DEATakeBack.com.
The Marquette and McGregor sites cannot accept liquids, needles, or sharps. Only pills or patches are accepted.
Chief Robert Millin
Mar-Mac Police District