The Albuquerque Police Department has teamed up with the Drug Enforcement Administration and Walgreens for national Drug Take Back Day, which allows people the opportunity to properly and safely dispose of unused or expired medications.
Expired pharmaceuticals can be a hassle to dispose of, as it is illegal to just throw them in the trash. They can end up in the wrong hands and often get flushed down the drain. Water treatment plants are not equipped to remove medications from wastewater, and it can also greatly affect the environment, water quality and endanger people’s health. The DEA also says the drug overdose epidemic in the United States is a clear and present public health, public safety and national security threat. Encouraging the public to remove unneeded medications from their homes is a measure of preventing medication misuse and opioid addiction from starting.
“The DEA is committed to making our communities safer and healthier, and we can do this by reducing overdoses and overdose deaths. While the community does its part to turn in unneeded medications and remove them from potential harm, we are doing our part to further reduce drug-related violence,” reads the DEA take back day site.
In April, 5,144 sites collected 360 tons of unused medications nationwide and have collected 7,995 tons since the program started in 2010.
From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29, the Walgreens at 8400 Montgomery NE will be accepting all unused medical drugs for proper disposal, as well as at the 2011 12th St. Walgreens location.
If residents miss drug take back day, there are year-round locations for Public Controlled Substance Disposal, including some APD Substations as well as locations throughout the city from the DEA website.