On Saturday, Oct. 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., both the Narragansett and South Kingstown police departments will be participating in the “DEA Nationwide Drug Take-Back Day". In Narragansett, the 4-hour event will take place at the department's 40 Caswell Street headquarters. South Kingstown Police will be collecting at their station located at 1790 Kingstown Road in Wakefield.
Along with South Kingstown and Narragansett Police, the Office of Attorney General, the US Dept. of Justice Drug Enforcement Administration, the Rhode Island State Police and more than 30 police departments statewide will give the public another opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.
Residents may bring medications for safe and secure disposal to any of 37 collection sites across Rhode Island (for a complete list, please visit www.dea.gov or www.riag.ri.gov). These drugs will be picked by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and destroyed. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.
Prescription drug abuse is quickly becoming a major epidemic in Rhode Island and across the nation. According to the Centers for Disease Control, more Americans now die from painkillers than from heroin and cocaine combined, and since 2008, prescription drug-induced deaths have outstripped those from automobile accidents.
Drug take back days address 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.
“This initiative addresses a vital public safety and health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse,” said Attorney General Kilmartin. “Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, 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, particularly from the home medicine cabinet. Removing dangerous medication from homes is another way to safeguard our children and aging population.”
In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards.
Please note: Needles are not accepted at collection sites. Liquids are okay, so long as they are sealed.