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Safe Drug Disposal Day: Burns Park Sat Apr 27

drugs

Dispose of Old and Unused Prescription Drugs in a Safe and Environmentally Friendly Way

Many of us have cabinets full of old and unused medications. Even tucked away in the most discrete places, these medications can still get into the wrong hands.

A growing number of teens are abusing prescription drugs obtained from their own homes. According to the Office of National Drug Control Policy’s 2008 report, Prescription for Danger, one third of all new abusers of prescription drugs in 2006 were 12- to 17-year-olds.

Your old medications may even be a target for those you don’t know. Crime associated with abuse and diversion of prescription drugs has increased in all regions of the U.S. within the past five years.

The solution for many years has been to flush old medications down the toilet, but this is not an environmentally safe method for disposal. A recent study by the U.S. Geological Survey found that a broad range of chemicals, including prescription drugs, antibiotics, and hormones, are present in rivers, lakes, and oceans because wastewater treatment plants cannot completely remove these chemicals before discharging treated effluent into the rivers. There are no known risks (yet) to human health, but scientific studies link these emerging contaminants in the environment to reproduction problems and behavioral changes in fish and other aquatic wildlife. To learn more about this issue, please visit the Harpeth River Watershed Association’s (HRWA) webpage: http://www.harpethriver.org/harpeth/water.

But, there is a solution. The safest method of disposal is to drop off old prescription drugs at designated bins. HRWA is partnering with local and state agencies to help increase the opportunities for communities to access these bins, and you have the chance to participate this month!

The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) is hosting its sixth National Prescription Drug Take-Back event on Saturday, April 27, from 10AM – 2PM. The City of Kingston Springs is hosting a convenient drop-off location at L.L. Burns Park, 501 Park St. You don’t even need to get out of your car! Gather all your old and unused medications and dispose of them in this safe and convenient way.

In the past five take-back events, the DEA, in conjunction with state, local, and tribal law enforcement partners have removed more than two million pounds of prescription medications, helping to keep them out of the wrong hands, and out of our rivers, lakes, oceans, and drinking water.

For more information about the DEA’s drug take-back program, please visit http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback/

The Harpeth River Watershed Association’s community awareness and outreach campaign on contaminants of emerging concern in our water is made possible thanks to a grant funded by Patagonia®

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