The Alexandria Police Department and the Alexandria Sheriff’s Office collected 148 pounds of potentially dangerous expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs for destruction at the third National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.
On Saturday, October 29, 2011, from 10 A.M. to 2 P.M., the two Alexandria law enforcement agencies, with cooperation from the Substance Abuse Coalition of Alexandria, collected potentially dangerous expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs and other medications for destruction at three sites in the City
Approximately 5300 collections sites nationwide participated in the third take back day program this past Saturday. In Alexandria, residents dropped off unused prescription medications at three drop sites in the City. The sites included the new Police Headquarters, Fire Station 209 and the George Washington Masonic Memorial. The service was free and anonymous.
Last April, the two Alexandria law enforcement agencies collected over 193 pounds of prescription drugs for destruction in the second ever take back initiative.
This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Many Americans are not aware that medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the United States 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 – both potential safety and health hazards.
Deputy Director of State, Local and Tribal Affairs for the Office of National Drug Control Policy Benjamin B. Tucker visited the collection sites throughout the City. Other participants in this initiative include the Partnership for a Drug-Free America; the International Association of Chiefs of Police; the National Association of Attorneys General; the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy; the Federation of State Medical Boards; and the National District Attorneys Association.