MIDDLESEX COUNTY — Perth Amboy and Carteret are participating in the second National Take Back Initiative, headed by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), to help residents get rid of unwanted prescription medications.
The purpose of the initiative is to help prevent drug abuse, by keeping potentially hazardous substances from illegal and unsafe use by providing drop-off locations where citizens can safely dispose of their unwanted, unused, or expired medications. Area residents can drop off unwanted medications at the Perth Amboy Police Department (lobby), located on 365 New Brunswick Avenue, or the Carteret Police Department, 230 Roosevelt Avenue on Saturday, April 30, from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
The DEA’s website notes, “More than seven million Americans currently abuse prescription drugs, according to the 2009 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Each day, approximately, 2,500 teens use prescription drugs to get high for the first time according to the Partnership for a Drug Free America. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including the home medicine cabinet.”
Prescription and over-the-counter medications should not be recycled. They should also not be dumped down the drain or toilet, as this may cause water pollution.
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection offers these guidelines for proper disposal of household medications:
- Mark out personal information on prescription container(s)
- Mix with water and coffee grinds, cat litter or dirt
- Place in a solid colored container
- Place in trash where is not visible to others
“It’s important to remember to keep our city and homes clean and clear of not only litter, but also of hazardous contents. I urge our residents and those of neighboring communities to be sure to dispose of these substances appropriately,” said Perth Amboy Mayor Wilda Diaz.
The first National Prescription Drug Take Back Day was held on Sept. 25, 2010; since that time a total of 121 tons of pills have been collected.
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