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Luther Strange
Alabama Attorney General www.ago.alabama.gov

AG State Building

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Contact: Joy Patterson
(334) 242-7491

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 April 26, 2013

AG STRANGE URGES ALABAMIANS TO PARTICIPATE IN
PRESCRIPTION DRUG TAKE-BACK DAY THIS SATURDAY

(MONTGOMERY)--- Attorney General Luther Strange again is urging Alabamians to participate in Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, which will be tomorrow, Saturday, April 27, at locations throughout the state.

This year’s event is the sixth National Prescription Drug Take-Back, a program sponsored by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to combat the abuse or misuse or potentially dangerous medicines that have expired or are no longer needed for those whom these controlled substances were prescribed. Law enforcement officers will be present at sites throughout Alabama to receive prescription drugs for safe and proper disposal.

Attorney General Strange has been active in efforts to strengthen and expand Alabama’s participation in this recurring effort by law enforcement for the safe disposal of prescription drugs. The people of Alabama have responded, making the

Prescription Drug-Take Back events last spring Alabama’s most successful ever, with more than 50 agencies sponsoring more than 70 collection sites and collecting more than 4,000 pounds of prescription drugs to be properly destroyed. In Alabama alone, Take-Back events have accounted for more than 13,000 pounds collected in the state’s previous events, which translates to more than 17 million pills that were safely disposed.

"We have been heartened by the positive response of agencies and citizens throughout Alabama who have responded with their support and participation," said Attorney General Strange. "This is an important and basic step to fight drug abuse and drug-related crimes, by assisting in the removal of potentially dangerous controlled substances from our homes. Many of us have out-dated prescriptions that are too easily accessible to children and others. These drugs can also be the target of home invasions and burglaries. On April 27, we are asking the people of Alabama to protect their homes and communities by locating medicines that are out of date or no longer needed, and bringing them in for safe and proper disposal."

Law enforcement agencies and interested community partners such as pharmacies, schools, and civic groups are working together to provide as many local sites as possible throughout Alabama. Each site will be supervised by a law enforcement officer due to the involvement of controlled substances. This year, an estimated 57 law enforcement agencies are sponsoring about 85 collection sites across Alabama, which is a 15 percent increase over previous events.

Deliveries of drugs to Prescription Take-Back are confidential, with no personal information collected and no questions asked. Participants are encouraged to remove labels or black-out information beforehand.

Many teenagers and young people who abuse prescription drugs get them from family and friends or from their home medicine cabinets. According to a survey by the Partnership for a Drug-Free America, one in five teens has tried Vicodin, a powerful addictive narcotic painkiller; one in 10 has tried OxyContin, also a prescription narcotic; and one in 10 has used stimulants such as Ritalin or Adderall for non-medical purposes, and one in 11 admit to getting high on cough syrup.

Prescription drugs pose dangers to children and others who may take them by accident or who may use them for abusive purposes. Expired drugs may have lost their effectiveness and therefore no longer be a safe and adequate treatment for the conditions for which they were prescribed. In addition to concerns of potential poisoning, abuse or overdose, it also is important environmentally that medicines be disposed in a proper manner rather than simply being thrown into garbage, flushed away, or poured down drains, as they could contaminate water supplies and cause an environmental hazard.

People who wish to participate should inquire with their local law enforcement agencies, or may check the following website for a nearby location:

River Region Drop Off Information

Drug Disposal - National Take-Back Initiative Site Search 

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