Alabamians urged to participate in Prescription Drug Take-Back Day this Saturday, Oct. 27

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MONTGOMERY – Attorney Gen. Steve Marshall urges Alabamians to participate in the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, on Saturday, Oct. 27, at various locations throughout the state.

The Cullman County Sheriff's Office,  8 a.m. to noon

Cullman County residents can bring their unused or expired medication to the Cullman County Sheriff's Office Training Building, next door to the sheriff's office, and deputies will dispose of the medication for them safely. 

"There are several very important reasons to dispose of unwanted prescription drugs, but the main reason is these medicines remain in the home and are highly susceptible to being misused, stolen and abused," said Sheriff Matt Gentry. 

From Marshall’s office:

The aim is to provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs, while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse and medications.

This year’s event—the 16th DEA National Prescription Drug Take-Back–has approximately 50 collection sites scheduled to be available in Alabama this Saturday. The program is sponsored by the DEA to combat the abuse or misuse of 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 unused prescription drugs for safe and proper disposal.  

Since the first Take-Back event in Alabama, in September of 2010, the program continues to increase in the amount of drugs collected.  Throughout all of Alabama’s previous DEA Prescription Drug Take-Back events, a total of about 66,805 pounds of unwanted, unused or expired drugs have been removed and disposed of safely.

“Prescription Drug Take-Back is a valuable public service that protects our children, our homes and our environment,” said Marshall. “As a long-time prosecutor, I have too often witnessed the tragic results caused by the availability of dangerous controlled substances.  When prescription drugs are left in our homes, children and teenagers may be poisoned or fall prey to drug abuse and addiction. Your old medications can be a lure to criminals looking for drugs to use or sell.  On Saturday, October 27, please take the opportunity to remove these hazards by bringing prescription drugs that are out-of-date or no longer needed to collection sites for their 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. 

Deliveries of drugs to DEA Prescription Drug Take-Back Day events 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.  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 of 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.