PHOENIX (Wednesday, September 26, 2012) -- Expired, unwanted, unused and otherwise dangerous prescription drugs will be taken back at an event this Saturday in Phoenix to encourage Arizonans to get rid of unneeded prescription drugs that can pose a threat to children, Attorney General Tom Horne said today.
From 10 AM to 2 PM, Saturday, September 29, the Attorney General’s Office and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) will host the “Take Back Unwanted Prescription Drugs” event to accept prescription drugs for destruction. It will be held at Wesley Bolin Plaza, at 17th Avenue between Washington and Jefferson, in Phoenix. The service is free and anonymous, with no questions asked.
“While prescription drugs are vital when used appropriately, we are seeing far too many incidents of prescription drug abuse and tragic situations where a child is poisoned unwittingly because he or she had access to prescription drugs at home,” Horne said. “We are also seeing far too many cases of minors intentionally raiding a home medicine cabinet in order to abuse prescription drugs. People need to make sure those drugs are safely stored, and drugs that are expired, unused or no longer needed should be disposed of properly. I am grateful to the DEA for their partnership to make this possible.”
The event is also designed to educate people that disposing of drugs by flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash pose potential safety and health hazards.
In 2010, Congress passed the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act, which amends the Controlled Substances Act to allow an “ultimate user” of controlled substance medications to dispose of them by delivering them to entities authorized by the Attorney General to accept them. The Act also allows the Attorney General to authorize long term care facilities to dispose of their residents’ controlled substances in certain instances. DEA is drafting regulations to implement the Act.
Last April, Americans turned in 552,161 pounds—276 tons—of prescription drugs at over 5,600 sites operated by the DEA and nearly 4,300 state and local law enforcement partners. In its four previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners took in over 1.5 million pounds—nearly 775 tons—of pills.
EDITORS / WEEKEND ASSIGMENT EDITORS, FYI:
WHO: Attorney General Horne and DEA Agents
WHAT: Take Back Unwanted Prescription Drugs Event
WHEN: Saturday, September 29, 10AM – 2 PM
WHERE: Wesley Bolin Plaza – 17th Av. between Washington & Jefferson Streets, Phoenix