In the belief that the best way to keep unused prescription drugs from getting into the wrong hands is to get them out of the house, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is hosting its 8th Drug Take Back Day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. this Saturday, April 26.
It gives residents a chance to safely dispose of unwanted and out-of-date drugs by turning them in to a police department or other designated disposal site in their neighborhood. Over the past three and a half years, more than 1,700 tons of prescription medications have been collected.
That’s good news when it comes to protecting the health of young people. Prescription drugs (after marijuana and alcohol) are the most commonly abused substances used by Americans 14 and older, according to the Orange County Drug Free Coalition.
In addition, 70% of children who abuse prescription drugs admit to getting them from family or friends.
Thousands of sites across the country will participate on Saturday. Locally, residents can take their unwanted prescription drugs to the Winter Park Public Safety Building at 500 N. Virginia Avenue in Winter Park. The city’s Prescription Reclamation Station, in the lobby of the building, is also available year round during regular business hours—8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday except holidays. If a resident comes after hours, they can pick up the phone located outside the building and an officer will let them in to dispose of drugs.
In addition, the Maitland Police Department, at 1837 Fennell St., in Maitland, will be accepting unwanted drugs on Saturday.
Many other collections sites are available in Central Florida. To find the closest collection site, go to www.dea.gov or call 1-800-882-9539.