MERRIMAC — Chief Eric Shears is pleased to announce that the Merrimac Police Department turned in 51 pounds of unused medication following National Drug Take Back Day.
In collaboration with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Merrimac Police coordinated a “take back” event on April 27 at the Merrimac Police Station on East Main Street.
The collection event was part of a semi-annual initiative, where thousands of law enforcement agencies across the country work to provide community members with an easy, accessible way to dispose of expired or unwanted prescription drugs.
This April’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day set new records, according to the DEA, as approximately 6,400 collection sites were set up by local, state, tribal and federal groups. As a result, approximately 469 tons of prescription medications were collected and disposed of.
Since the first Prescription Drug Take Back Day event was held in the fall of 2010, approximately 5,908 tons of medication has been collected through semi-annual, DEA-sponsored events.
The Merrimac Police Department has hosted two Prescription Drug Take Back Days per year since 2013, and since then has accepted and properly disposed of several hundred pounds of unused medication.
“Prescription Drug Take Back Days are a great opportunity for residents to discard unwanted or expired medications safely,” said Police Sgt. David Vance. “It’s also a great opportunity for us to educate residents about the dangers of prescription drug use.”
Studies suggest that the majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet, and Take Back Day offers Americans a safe and secure way to remove those excess drugs from their homes.
Residents who missed National Drug Take Back Day can still turn in their unused medications at the Merrimac Police Department’s kiosk, which is located in the police station lobby. Residents should note that liquids, needles or sharps are not accepted.