Local law enforcement agencies, Roanoke Area Youth Substance Abuse Coalition (RAYSAC), the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the Western Virginia Water Authority are partnering to collect expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs for safe destruction on Saturday, April 27 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at fifteen area locations.
The public is invited to bring unused or unwanted medications to this free and anonymous event that is part of the nationwide prescription drug “Take-Back” program that seeks to prevent prescription pill abuse, theft and environmental concerns.
This is the valley’s 16th such take-back event. To date, over 33,00 pounds of prescription medications have been turned in by area citizens for proper disposal making our area one of the largest collection locations in the state.
This initiative addresses vital public safety and public health issues. Medications that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. and in the valley are increasing at alarming rates, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that 90% of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In fact, the majority of commonly abused drugs by teenagers are prescription medications.
In addition, flushing medications down the drain can result in trace amounts of pharmaceuticals showing up in our nation’s waterways. This initiative offers a safe and convenient disposal option for the valley residents.
This Saturday there will be fifteen collection locations in the valley: Roanoke Towers Mall CVS parking lot, The Solutions Center, 2328 Melrose Ave., the Super Shoes parking lot on West Main in Salem, VA State Police Headquarters on Main Street Salem, the VA Hospital Bldg 143, Kroger parking lots in Daleville, Vinton (Hardy Road), Tanglewood Mall, Bonsack, and Westlake as well as the Roanoke County Fire and Rescue Station #1 on Hershberger Road, Walgreens at Electric Rd./Brambleton Ave., and the Market Street Pharmacy in Craig County. (see www.dea.gov and www.raysac.org for other sites in the region)
This initiative is sponsored by RAYSAC, the Western Virginia Water Authority, Prevention Council of Roanoke County, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and area law enforcement officials.
By working together to provide a free, secure place to dispose of unwanted medications, the law enforcement agencies, RAYSAC and the Western Virginia Water Authority are helping prevent drug abuse, protecting our valley’s waterways and making our communities safer.