Roundup takes extra pills out of circulation
For the first time, the Haines Borough Police Department will be participating in a national prescription round-up program that aims to rid communities of unused medication that might otherwise be abused or sold illegally.
People can drop off expired or unused medication at the police department from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.
According to interim police chief Simon Ford, the non-medical use of prescription drugs ranks second only to marijuana as the most common form of drug abuse in America. “It is a problem right here in Haines,” he said.
The majority of teenagers abusing prescription drugs get them from family and friends, or from the home medicine cabinet, he said.
Throwing unwanted or expired medications in the trash is an ineffective means of disposal, as the drugs can be accidentally accessed by small children and swallowed. Medication should also not be flushed down the toilet because the pills contaminate the water supply and can have adverse effects on wildlife.
According to the state, National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day started Sept. 25, 2010, with 3,000 state and local law enforcement agencies participating and more than 121 tons of pills turned in.
Last year, more than two tons of prescription medications were collected statewide between two take-back events in April and October.
Call 766-2121 for more information.